Azerbaijani and Armenian presidents meet in Geneva

The meeting is reportedly an attempt to revive peace negotiations

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan met in Geneva on 16 October, according to

a report

published on President Aliyev’s official website.

The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group (MG) and a special representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office attended the meeting.

Earlier reports said that the two presidents would discuss the Karabakh conflict settlement process during their meeting.

So far neither side has issued a comment.

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev

said on 9 October

that the negotiation process toward a peaceful settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict was being resumed without any preconditions. He said that Armenia had been doing everything it could to disrupt the negotiations, using various pretexts to prevent talks from resuming and proposing a number of terms and conditions. “However, I immediately said that none of those conditions would be accepted. By putting forward those terms and conditions, Armenia put itself in a ridiculous position and has now to abandon that policy,” President Aliyev said.

Ilham Aliyev added that resumption of the negotiation process was in no way a favor for Azerbaijan.

Armen Ashotyan, a representative of the ruling Republican Party of Armenia, had said that

Armenia’s expectation

from the upcoming meeting was that Azerbaijan would implement principles adopted in Vienna and St Petersburg, namely, steps to restore peace and strengthen trust between the parties.

Those principles provide for monitoring of the line of contact and stepping up of monitoring procedures to prevent cease-fire violations and identify perpetrators of cease-fire violations.

Azerbaijan rejects any proposals that restrict its legitimate right to resort to military action to resolve the conflict.

The last time the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan met was in St Petersburg in June 2016. It was a tripartite meeting held at the initiative and with the participation of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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