South Korea backs int’l efforts to settle Nagorno-Karabakh conflict

By: Mushvig Mehdiyev

The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan should be settled based on international norms and principles, a South Korean official said.

During a visit to the Azerbaijani parliament on March 29, member of the Korean National Assembly, Kang Chang-hee said the only way to solve the conflict in the Nagorno-Karabakh region was clearly provided in the documents adopted by the United Nations and other international organizations.

“South Korea supports the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict’s resolution pursuant to the UN and similar international resolutions,” Chang-hee said.

Armenia and Azerbaijan remain locked in a bitter territorial dispute over the Nagorno-Karabakh region, which Armenia-backed separatists seized from Azerbaijan in a bloody war in the early 1990s.

Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized Nagorno-Karabakh territory was turned into a battlefield and zone of aggravated tensions after Armenia sent its troops to occupy Azerbaijan’s lands. As a result, 20 percent of Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized territory stands under military occupation. For the past two decades, and despite calls from the international community, Armenia has refused to withdraw its troops and retreat within its national borders.

The two countries signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Russia, France and the U.S. are currently holding peace negotiations.

South Korea’s support to Azerbaijan’s fair position in view of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution has been repeatedly stated in high-level meetings between the officials of two countries.

Armenia’s coercive encroachment on the internationally recognized and historical Azerbaijani lands resulted in the forced displacement of nearly one million Azerbaijanis from the Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions.

Besides that, the rights of those refugees and IDPs living in refugee camps in Azerbaijan are still being violated grossly by Armenia since it refuses to withdraw from the occupied lands.

Intolerance towards humanistic principles, the aggressive content of its state policy and also baseless territorial claims of Armenia against Azerbaijan are vivid factors driving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict’s settlement to a deadlock.