Baku slams Yerevan for declared intention to build new road in Karabakh
BAKU/YEREVAN. July 26 (Interfax) - The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry has strongly denounced the Armenian leadership's declared intention to build a new road in the Nagorno-Karabakh area and described this as a provocative act aimed at undermining the settlement process.
Declarations of the kind are yet another manifestation of Yerevan's intention to consolidate the existing status quo and to prevent negotiations on a peaceful settlement of the conflict, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said in a statement published on Friday.
"Despite the creation of fertile ground for settling the conflict, Armenia is continuing its illegal activities [in Nagorno-Karabakh] in a destructive form behind the smokescreen of a ceasefire, which is yet another act of provocation aimed at disrupting the negotiating process. All responsibility for this rests with Armenia's political and military leadership," it said.
The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry called on the OSCE Minsk Group co-chair countries (France, Russia, and the United States) to take a serious attitude toward "illegal activities pursued by Armenia in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan, which influences the negotiating process."
"We strongly denounce Armenia's provocative actions and demand that the aggressor put an end to its actions against peace, security, and prosperity in the region and withdraw the occupying forces from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan," it said.
The past record shows that Armenia's plans to build a road "in the occupied Qubadli and Cebrayil districts are aimed at plundering natural and other resources in those territories in an even more aggressive form," the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said.
"Azerbaijan reserves the right to react to such provocative actions in an appropriate way," it said.
Armenian Security Council Secretary Armen Grigoryan had said earlier on Friday that Nagorno-Karabakh was among the key items of Armenia's new national security strategy that Yerevan is planning to draw up together with experts from Stepanakert. Grigoryan said also that, while travelling to the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh republic, he had discussed the development of infrastructure, particularly the construction of roads and development of businesses, with local officials.