Estonia initiates UNSC discussion on Nagorno-Karabakh tensions ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

The meeting about Nagorno-Karabakh at the UNSC on September 29.
The meeting about Nagorno-Karabakh at the UNSC on September 29. Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

On the initiative of Estonia, Belgium, Germany, France and the United Kingdom a discussion about the situation Nagorno-Karabakh took place in the UN Security Council on Tuesday (September 29).

Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Reinsalu (Isamaa) said the large-scale military hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh (Mägi-Karabahh) which erupted on Sunday are worrying. 

He expressed condolences to the families of the victims and called on the parties to de-escalate. "Violence and cruel rhetoric do not lead to a solution, the only way out is peaceful dialogue," said Reinsalu.

The Permanent Representative of Estonia to the United Nations Sven Jürgenson said the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) plays an important role in resolving the frozen Nagorno-Karabakh conflict internationally.

The Security Council adopted a joint statement calling on Armenia and Azerbaijan to ease tensions immediately and expressing support for the UN Secretary-General's call for the resumption of negotiations between the parties.

Map of the Nagorno Karabakh (Mägi-Karabahh) region. Source: Nagorno Karabakh Observer / ERR

Statement by Ambassador S. Jürgenson at UN Security Council VTC AOB on Nagorno-Karabakh

I would like to thank Under-Secretary-General Di Carlo for the briefing and echoing the Secretary General's statements on this issue – developments in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone are seriously worrisome.

We are extremely concerned by the large scale military hostilities along the line of contact in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone, with civilian and military casualties.  We strongly condemn the use of force and regret the loss of life. We extend our deepest condolences to the families of those killed and injured.

We join the Secretary-General's call on the sides to immediately stop fighting, de-escalate tensions and return to meaningful negotiations without delay.  There has to be peaceful resolution to the current situation.

The original appeal of the Secretary-General for the global ceasefire was endorsed by 180 Member States of the United Nations. Back in March he urged the warring parties to "end the sickness of war and fight the disease that is ravaging our world". The Secretary-General has repeated the call just recently in his opening speech of the General Assembly debate, and it is this Council that has the special responsibility for backing it.

The OSCE plays an important role in international efforts regarding frozen conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh. We support the efforts of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs and urge the parties to come out with steps to de-escalate and resume negotiations for a solution. We call on the parties to refrain from destabilizing rhetoric and actions that further raise tensions on the ground.

We would like to remind that indirect participation in the conflict by external parties is not acceptable and further escalates tensions in the region. Nagarno-Karabakh is so called frozen conflict, one of many in South Caucasus and East European territories. Frozen conflicts keep hostage many regions and countries in Europe. The result is economic and other hardship for millions of people. It is the duty of international community to support and encourage meaningful negotiations that bring solutions.

We continue to keep a close eye on the developments in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone and insist that the Security Council will remain seized of the matter, if the hostilities continue and developments on the ground so require.

The statement can be viewed here.

UN Security Council Press elements on the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh

29 September 2020 Security Council members expressed concern over reports of large scale military actions along the Line of Contact in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone.

They strongly condemn the use of force and regret the loss of life and the toll on the civilian population. The Security Council members voiced support for the call by the Secretary General on the sides to immediately stop fighting, de-escalate tensions and return to meaningful negotiations without delay.

Security Council members expressed their full support for the central role of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs and urge the sides to work closely with them for an urgent resumption of dialogue without preconditions.

The statement can be viewed here.

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Editor: Helen Wright

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