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Nagorno-Karabakh troops in training exercises last year (file photo) (Photolur)
14 February 2006 -- Armenia says it is confident of further negotiations with Azerbaijan over the disputed enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh after recent talks in France failed to produce a breakthrough.
The presidents of the two countries held face-to-face talks on 10-11 February outside Paris on the status of the Armenian-majority enclave.
In the run-up to the summit, diplomats had expressed guarded optimism that progress could be made in settling the 18-year-old dispute, which has claimed at least 25,000 lives and driven more than a million people from their homes.
The Minsk group of Russian, French, and U.S. mediators are set to meet in Washington in March to formulate the framework of future negotiations.
Click on the image to view an enlarged map of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone
In February 1988, the local assembly in Stepanakert, the local capital of the Azerbaijani region of NAGORNO-KARABAKH, passed a resolution calling for unification of the predominantly ethnic-Armenian region with Armenia. There were reports of violence against local Azeris, followed by attacks against Armenians in the Azerbaijani city of Sumgait. In 1991-92, Azerbaijani forces launched an offensive against separatist forces in Nagorno-Karabakh, but the Armenians counterattacked and by 1993-94 had seized almost all of the region, as well as vast areas around it. About 600,000 Azeris were displaced and as many as 25,000 people were killed before a Russian-brokered cease-fire was imposed in May 1994.
CHRONOLOGY: For an annotated timeline of the fighting around Nagorno-Karabakh in 1988-94 and the long search for a permanent settlement to the conflict, click here.
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