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Armenia/Azerbaijan: Nagorno-Karabakh Rejects Peace Plan

Yerevan, 26 August 1997 (RFE/RL) - Arkady Ghukasyan, foreign minister of the self-proclaimed Nagorno-Karabakh Republic and one of three candidates contesting the September 1 presidential election, has told supporters that the enclave's leadership has rejected the peace plan presented to the leaderships of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Karabakh in late May. The proposals were offered by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

Ghukasyan said the proposals envision the withdrawal of ethnic Armenian forces from occupied Azerbaijani territory and from the town of Shusha in the south of Karabakh. They also include the deployment of international troops along the Lachin corridor that links Karabakh and Armenia, and the downsizing of the Karabakh armed forces.

Armenia and Azerbaijan have accepted these proposals "as a basis for peace," according to Ghukasyan. He said peace negotiations will resume under OSCE sponsorship after the presdential election.