During Key West Talks
For the Resolution of the Karabakh Conflic

Nagorno Karabakh: No Signature in Geneva, Says Aliyev

Agence France Presse, April 15, 2001.

BAKU, Apr 15, 2001 - (Agence France Presse) Azerbaijan's President Heydar Aliyev said Saturday he did not believe a document would be signed during a new round of negotiations with Armenia on Nagorno Karabakh in Geneva in June.

Armenian President Robert Kocharian had said in Yerevan on Thursday that an accord on the Armenian-majority separatist enclave in Azeri territory might be signed by the two countries during the coming meeting of their presidents.

"Robert Kocharian's declarations cannot affect the course of the negotiations," Aliyev said at Baku airport on his return from a trip during which he met the Armenian president in Key West, Florida.

Aliyev said he was "satisfied" with his discussions in Key West and was pleased that representatives of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe's Minsk Group on Nagorno Karabakh led by the United States, Russia and France also took part.

According to delegates, the parties went some way to resolving the 13-year-long conflict during the talks, which were held from April 3 to 6. Kocharian and Aliyev also held separate talks with U.S. President George W. Bush on Monday.

Nagorno Karabakh is an Armenian-majority enclave in southwestern Azerbaijan.

The territory's local assembly voted in 1988 to be administered by Yerevan, a move which sparked a full-scale war with the breakup of the Soviet Union.

The Karabakh Armenians, with support from Yerevan, drove the Azeris from the territory and occupied a large patch of land outside.

A ceasefire was signed in 1994, but the talks have dragged on ever since. More than 30,000 people were killed from both sides and some one million driven from their homes during the course of the dispute.

Copyright 2001 Agence France Presse
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