OSCE Secretary General on Armenia - Azerbaijan Civil Peace Platform - EXCLUSIVE | Eurasia Diary - ednews.net

23 April, Tuesday

OSCE Secretary General on Armenia - Azerbaijan Civil Peace Platform - EXCLUSIVE

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Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Thomas Greminger was on an official visit in Azerbaijan on September 12. During the visit, the questions of cooperation between the OSCE and Azerbaijan, including the conflict with Armenia around the Nagorno-Karabakh region were on the agenda. Greminger also participated in a meeting at ADA University and spoke on the topic, “The OSCE as a Platform for Renewing Dialogue and Rebuilding Trust”.

OSCE Secretary General answered the question on Armenia-Azerbaijan Civil Peace Platform raised by the correspondent of Eurasia Diary.

Eurasia Diary: Civil Society representatives from Armenia and Azerbaijan formed an Armenia-Azerbaijan Civil Peace Platform which also involves the public representatives from the OSCE Minsk Group countries. In your opinion, how this Platform can be integrated into the work of the official OSCE Minsk Group to faster the peaceful resolution of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict?

Thomas Greminger: It is a very fundamental question that needs to be addressed in every conflict segment process. That is how you can combine the political - diplomatic track with civil society actors. If people on the ground are not prepared for resolving the conflict, then politicians cannot implement the solution. In reality it is not that much easy but it is obvious that civil society actors are always more united and more progressive for reaching the solution.

In Nagorno-Karabakh conflict it is absolutely fundamental that the population has to be prepared for the compromise and resolution. If they are not prepared then the politicians cannot even implement a solution. I think there is a huge potential in working more systematically with civil society and it has to be matched.

Eurasia Diary: Is there any project to be initiated by the OSCE Minsk Group aimed to deepen the integration with civil society?

Thomas Greminger: OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs have civil society projects in mind. I see readiness to move ahead at least with some processes and I totally agree with an assessment that there should be more cooperation between the civil society representatives from both sides because without it, it seems impossible to resolve the conflict.

The OSCE Minsk Group was created in 1992 by the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE, now Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE)) to encourage a peaceful, negotiated resolution to the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh.

Armenia - Azerbaijan Civil Peace Platform, established in December 2016, is the initiative of the citizens of Armenia and Azerbaijan, the civic institutions they represent, who want to contribute to the peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict in accordance with territorial integrity, internationally recognized borders and the sovereignty of both countries, according to international law and the four resolutions of the UN Security Council adopted in relation to the conflict. Today, the Platform also includes the civil society representatives from the OSCE Minsk Group countries.

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