Speech of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev at the meeting with Vladimir Kazimirov, the special envoy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation - January 31, 1994

As a whole, our negotiations are almost being carried on intensively every day, and these are not only meetings, but also exchanges of various information and telephone conversations. I wish to tell for clarity that the Azerbaijan side has constantly supported the cease fire and military actions for the last five-six months for the fair settlement of all issues led to the conflict. I have made these statements on behalf of the Azerbaijani Republic publicly - at the meetings with you, with the President of Russia Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin, Minister for Foreign Affairs Andrey Kozyrev. And, certainly, I have declared it at my meetings with the President of Armenia Levon Ter-Petrsoyan. During our last meeting with him in Ashgabat on December 23-24, I again sounded this opinion. Probably, you remember my statement at the meeting of heads of the CIS states - it was officially distributed. In this document, we have forwarded offers to stop military actions and start negotiations, but under condition of an immediate withdrawal of the Armenian armed units from the occupied territories.

Unfortunately, by virtue of the one-sided information disseminated by some information organs, a true notion about a real state of affairs is not always formed. In fact, the war is being waged in territory of Azerbaijan and Nagorno-Karabakh - the territory of Azerbaijan - is completely under the control of the Armenian armed units, moreover, they control over seven regions outside Nagorno Karabakh.

At your intermediary, we have repeatedly concluded agreements on an armistice. And every time, the Armenian side broke this agreement and occupied new districts. It threatened to move ahead further in order to solve the problem by force for its own interests. Today I wish to tell you and I ask you to convey it to the leadership of the Russian Federation that we support stopping military actions, putting an end to this bloody war. But under certain terms. And these terms are not caprices, they arise from the real condition.

As to the recent renewal of military actions, I should say that it has again started not on our initiative, but on the initiative of the Armenian armed units. They try to carry out their plans, to dictate their conditions even more rigidly by occupying new regions of Azerbaijan. But this time their efforts have failed, they have faced with worthy resistance of Armed Forces of Azerbaijan and they have had serious loss. If there is a war, losses are inevitable, they happen from both sides, but as you emphasized, serious losses are given by the attacking side. Yes, the attacking side is armenians, and therefore they give more losses. And you should know about it. The armenian sources should not misinform the public by saying that 5 thousand Azerbaijanis were killed. How they could count it? It is wrong. If they attack, then they give grievous losses. We have also losses. But today, I openly declare you: we are waging fair war because we are in our territory, we want to clear our lands from invaders, from the Armenian armed forces, if it is impossible by peace way, then by military way. Our people perish, perish heroically defending their Native land. And why Armenians are killed in our lands - in Fizuli, Aghdam, Kalbajar, Aghdere and in other districts where there is a war? And I either do not know whether these losses are favorable for the Armenian people.

Taking an opportunity of the presence of representatives of mass media here, I wish to address to Armenian people: this war must be stopped. Armenian and Azerbaijani peoples lived and will live side by side for centuries. The destiny has made them to live together and eternal enmity is impossible. And the young men from different areas of Armenia are forcibly sent to Azerbaijan and they are killed in Kalbajar, Fizuli in other places. Do armenian people want it? We have a lot of proofs connected with it, there are evidences of military captives, and testimonies of reliable people. For example, former first secretary of the party committee of Gukasyan district who in due time got his education at the Baku Higher Party School. These people declare that they are sent to war by force, they are threatened with prosecutions concerning their families. Therefore they don`t have another way: to be lost either there or here.

Last military actions are really active, but they became intensified by attack of the Armenian armed formations. However this time they have miscalculated, because now the Azerbaijan army is not the army of previous months. Now it is in a condition to defend, protect its lands and give worthy repulse to the armenian armed formations who are conducting operations in the territory of the occupied areas of Azerbaijan.

Therefore, I address to armenian people and to the government of Armenia with an appeal to put an end to war. It is necessary to realize that the policy carried out by force will not give any results. We will in no way admit any humiliating agreements for the Azerbaijan Republic or Azerbaijan people. We have sufficient might and opportunities to protect our sovereign republic and its territory.

You have been offering an armistice since February 1 and associate it with the appointment of the new chairman of the CSCE Minsk group. I welcome the new chairman. But I also wish to remind: the former chairman of the Minsk group Mr.Raffaelli was in Baku in July of the last year, we met him and cooperated very actively. Then he visited Aghdam. We completely agreed with the document he had brought here - the schedule of withdrawal of armies from the Kelbajar district. But before he left Azerbaijan, the Armenian armed forces captured the Aghdam region. Expressing out respect to the Minsk group, its former and present head, we are ready to mark the beginning of the activity of new Minsk group chairman Mr. Eliasson with a new peaceful step. But is the Armenian side ready for it? The facts prove the opposite. In fact, Armenia has insulted both the Minsk group and Raffaelli, I think, as well as the special representative of the Russian Federation Vladimir Nikolaevich Kazimirov when he was going through Gazakh to Armenia with the good-will mission draft agreement, on which we worked here within five days. He was fired and it was wonder that he was escaped. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia and Council of Ministers of the Russian Federation have made then the worthy statement, but the Armenian side did not apologize at all. But we cannot forget it, and I think, you should not forget it too. Anyway, we cannot agree Armenia to dictate everything. It is very difficult to speak in peace language with such partner, and you yourself witness it. You visited Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh, Khankandy, I do not know whether they made an apology somewhere or not, but they have not made an official apology. It is unprecedented fact in the international practice.

I have welcomed your arrival here and your initiatives with great satisfaction. Taking this opportunity, I consider it necessary to address to Armenian people, Armenian inhabitants of Nagorno-Karabakh, being citizens of Azerbaijan and call them to think deeply, over it because this long-term war has brought nothing. I was told that a young man taken prisoner from Martuni region has said: we do not want to be at war, we lived here and we want to live here amicably with Azerbaijanis, and we have no any claims to them. But we are compelled and sent there by force. There is a group of people who instigate us to this war.

Addressing to all inhabitants of Nagorno-Karabakh, I call them to lay down arms. As the President of Azerbaijan, I guarantee full safety of all armenians living in Nagorno-Karabakh, equal in rights as citizens of Azerbaijan. On these conditions, we can stop military actions, conclude an armistice and reach the agreement.