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Need to “Differentiate” Territories of Nagorno-Karabakh: US Ambassador to Armenia

US Ambassador to Armenia John Heffern (pictured) explained to Armenian journalists today why OSCE Minsk Group US Co-Chair James Warlick outlined the six principles of the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. According to the ambassador, there are three reasons why Warlick gave the speech now:

"First, May 14, as you know, is the 20th anniversary of the ceasefire of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict — a very important event. So he felt it was time to make a policy statement on the way forward on Nagorno-Karabakh, to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the ceasefire. 

"The second reason to do the speech now was because he feels that there's been a lull, a lack of progress [in] the last 6 months that's concerning us. So through the speech he tried and he hopes that he's been able to give a bit of a boost to the negotiating process.

"And the third reason is the policy goal of the speech today. And the goal of the speech today was to encourage the parties to the conflict, the governments, and the people to differentiate (I'll explain what that means in a minute, but the key word is differentiation). 

"When I say differentiate, I mean differentiate between the status of Nagorno-Karabakh proper and the territories surrounding Nagorno-Karabakh — different status, different outcome, as we negotiate the final solution, the peaceful solution. Because it's our impression that both capitals, both governments, both people, including Nagorno-Karabakh, are beginning to mix up, are beginning to treat all the territories in Nagorno-Karabakh like they're the same. They're not the same, they're very different, [and] the outcomes will be very different. So that was the main purpose," Ambassador Heffern told members of the media