Accessibility links

Breaking News

Karabakh Approves Pro-Independence Constitution

(RFE/RL) December 11, 2006 -- An overwhelming majority of voters in Azerbaijan's breakaway Nagorno-Karabakh region have approved a new pro-independence constitution.

According to official preliminary results from the December 10 referendum, as many as 98.6 percent of voters approved the constitution, which describes Nagorno-Karabakh as a sovereign state.

The predominantly Armenian enclave seceded from Soviet Azerbaijan in 1988, triggering a war that claimed about 30,000 lives.

Azerbaijan does not recognize Nagorno-Karabakh's independence and has rejected the referendum as having no legal meaning.

Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov today warned the vote would hamper international efforts to resolve
the conflict.

Both the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSC) today rejected the referendum. In a statement, the OSCE's chairman in office, Belgian Foreign Minister Karel De Gucht, also called the vote potentially harmful to the ongoing conflict settlement process, which, he said, has shown "visible progress" and is at a "promising juncture."

(Reuters, ITAR-TASS)

The Kremlin Looks At Kosovo...And Beyond

The Kremlin Looks At Kosovo...And Beyond
Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) greets Serbian President Boris Tadic in the Kremlin in November 2005 (TASS)

WILL THE KREMLIN BACK INDEPENDENCE? As the drive for independence grows in the Serbian province of Kosovo, the international community is speculating on how Russia, a veto-wielding member of the UN Security Council, will act. On September 22, Nicholas Whyte, director of the International Crisis Group's Europe Program, gave a briefing on the subject at RFE/RL's Washington, D.C., office. He speculated on what the Kremlin's "price" might be for agreeing to Kosovo's separation from Serbia.


Listen to the entire briefing (about 45 minutes):
Real Audio Windows Media


Referendums Seen As Kremlin's Master Plan

Independence Votes Popular In The Kremlin

Putin Warns Against Montenegro Model

How Does Moscow View Frozen CIS Conflicts?

Putin Calls For 'Universal Principles' To Settle Frozen Conflicts


RFE/RL's coverage of Kosovo and Russia.


For news and analysis on Russia by e-mail, subscribe to "RFE/RL Russia Report."

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.