Deputy Chairman of the Committee of the State Duma of the Russian Federation for the CIS talked about the paths to the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict as a guest speaker on the Posner TV show aired on Russia’s First Channel.
The TV show’s host Vladimir Posner reminded that Zatulin was strictly criticized in Azerbaijan for his recent visit to Nagorno-Karabakh and asked Zatulin how he sees the settlement of the conflict.
Konstantin Zatulin stated that he had expressed his position on Nagorno-Karabakh a long time ago and strongly believes that, like other conflicts, the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict could have been settled a long time ago as well.
“Mutual concession underlies the settlement of the conflict. The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, or the Republic of Artsakh, is not recognized, but it exists. I would like to tell you that the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic will never agree to be a part of Azerbaijan. Even when the USSR collapsed, Azerbaijan’s recognition within the boundaries of the former Soviet Socialist Republic of Azerbaijan was delayed because at the time, in 1991, the conflict had been going on for three years already, and Azerbaijan didn’t have full control over the territory of the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Oblast. Thus, the right of Nagorno-Karabakh to self-determination and independence from Azerbaijan needs to be acknowledged,” Zatulin said.
According to him, Nagorno-Karabakh must concede by delivering the regions that surround Nagorno-Karabakh and were seized by self-defense forces during the war. He stated that this concerns five of the seven regions since the remaining two link Karabakh to Armenia.
Zatulin added that “unruly nationalists” are hindering the mutual concessions of both countries. The Azerbaijanis say they need to have Karabakh as a whole, while the people in Armenia say the lands gained through bloodshed can’t be delivered.