Accessibility links

Breaking News

Nagorno-Karabakh President Expresses Optimism

President Ghukasian (2002 file photo) (epa) 25 October 2005 -- The president of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, Arkadii Ghukasian, told RFE/RL's Armenian Service today that he feels optimistic 2006 could see progress toward a negotiated settlement of the Karabakh problem.

Ghukasian called it a "suitable year" in part because there are no elections scheduled next year "in Karabakh, Armenia, Azerbaijan, [or] Russia."

He also said international mediators seem eager to speed up the process.

Ghukasian said Azerbaijan appears more willing to discuss the issue.

"Of course, I consider it positive that today Azerbaijan speaks about the status of Karabakh and does not avoid discussions," Ghukasian told RFE/RL. "If you remember, in the past, Azerbaijan spoke only about issues of particular interest to them. Today, one can assume that Azerbaijan is perhaps ready to work in a more constructive manner."

Armenian President Robert Kocharian and his Azerbaijani counterpart Ilham Aliyev discussed the conflict in late August following a CIS summit in Kazan.

Nagorno-Karabakh, a mostly ethnic Armenian enclave, broke away from Soviet Azerbaijan in 1988, sparking a war in which some 35,000 people were killed. A cease-fire took effect in 1994.

RFE/RL has been declared an "undesirable organization" by the Russian government.

If you are in Russia or the Russia-controlled parts of Ukraine and hold a Russian passport or are a stateless person residing permanently in Russia or the Russia-controlled parts of Ukraine, please note that you could face fines or imprisonment for sharing, liking, commenting on, or saving our content, or for contacting us.

To find out more, click here.