The “Madrid Principles” proposed by the OSCE Minsk Group for the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict implies a solution to the issue based on three principles: no use or threat of force, territorial integrity and people’s right to self-determination, said Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan in an interview with Moskovskiye Novosti on Monday.
“We very clearly understand what is meant by these three principles. After much thought, the Azeris too said ‘yes,’ but somehow they perceive these principles in their own way. Until now, Azerbaijan’s leadership at all levels constantly threatens to reignite military hostilities. The principle of territorial integrity is clear to us and to them, although it seems they have made it into absolute dogma outside the context of international law.
“But the right to self-determination they understand only as self-determination within the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan. Such determination doesn’t happen; that’s truncated, primitive self-determination. Thus, until Azerbaijan understands the meaning of this principle it will be very difficult to move toward resolving the conflict.
“Karabakh has defended its right to independence in a bloody and cruel war, in difficult conditions, and it’s quite naive to think that the Karabakh people can give up all that which they have achieved.
“These principles — territorial integrity and people’s right to self-determination — allowed both Armenia and Azerbaijan to gain independence. How is it then that in one case it’s acceptable while in another case it’s understood differently? This is illogical. The principle of territorial integrity doesn’t mean the inviolability of borders, otherwise no new states would form in the world. But over the past 20–30 years, dozens of new states appeared on the world map,” he said.