Latvia backs peaceful solution to Nagorno-Karabakh conflict (Azer News)

Latvia has voiced support to Azerbaijan’s position on the settlement of the long-lasting Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, which erupted back in 1988 over Yerevan’s territorial claims against Baku.

Edgars Rinkevics, Latvian Foreign Minister said on April 15 that his country backs efforts to find a peaceful solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

He made the remarks during a meeting with Azerbaijani counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov, who paid two-day visit to Riga.

We support peaceful resolution of the dispute based on principles of international law, especially the territorial integrity and sovereignty, Rinkevics said.

He also touched upon Latvian-Azerbaijani relations, noting that there is a huge potential to develop economic and trade ties. He expressed the Latvian government`s interest in attracting Azerbaijani investments to the country.

Mammadyarov, for his part, said it is important that the EU demonstrate a firm position on the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict as in the case with other disputes.

First and foremost, the armed forces of Armenia must be withdrawn from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan as it is demanded by four resolutions of the UN Security Council, he said.

Armenia occupied over 20 percent of Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions, after laying territorial claims against its South Caucasus neighbor that caused a brutal war in the early 1990s. Long-standing efforts by U.S, Russian and French mediators have been largely fruitless so far. The UN Security Council has passed four resolutions on Armenian withdrawal from the Azerbaijani territory, but they have not been enforced to this day.

Mammadyarov also expressed hope that the Latvian Presidency of the Council of the European Union would be a success.

He hailed energy cooperation between Azerbaijan and the EU as strategic, underlining the importance of developing partnership in other strategic fields.

Diplomatic relations between Latvia and Azerbaijan were established in January 1994.

Azerbaijan’s diplomatic mission in Riga was launched in November 2005, while Latvia’s diplomatic mission in Baku started its work in November 2006.

The countries actively cooperate within the framework of international organizations, such as the EU and NATO.