Briefing of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev and President of the Republic of Armenia for the Representatives of Mass Media – District of Sadarak, October 11, 1999

Robert Kocharian (pointing at the reporters says to the Azerbaijani President Heydar Aliyev): “Everybody is waiting impatiently for us to say that all the problems have been settled and so on. Our meetings are necessary. We discussed all the complex of issues. I must say that it is not easy to move forward towards the regulation of the conflict, there are many problems. I must say that the meeting of today summarized the works done up to the present day. Unfortunately, I am obliged to say again that we cannot disclose the details of our talks. But I think that in the nearest future you will be able to get much more comprehensive information.


I think that one thing else is very important here, we do not go to Geneva or somewhere else to meet each other, we meet in the border. As Mr. Heydar Aliyev said, once this spot was the place where the leaders of our two republics met each other. Even Meetings were held here.. That is all what I can say for the present.”


Heydar Aliyev: “Just here we were holding the meetings of the peoples of Armenia and Azerbaijan.

I agree fully with what the President of Armenia said. We analyzed the problem sufficiently enough. You know that the conflict has been going on for a long time. It emerged 12 years ago and had different stages. Many international organizations - the Organization of the United Nations, Organization of Security and organization of Security and Cooperation in Europe OSCE) - have been engaged in its solution. Since 1992 the Minsk Group of OSCE is being engaged in the solution of the conflict. It is to the point to say, the co-chairs of the Minsk Group are busy with it at present.


There have been many proposals, many variants there. But the parties have not reached any agreement. To find a peaceful solution for the conflict we weighed all the pros and cons of the issue with President Robert Kocharian. Of course, it is intricate, a lot of time has passed, and it is not easy to come to an agreement by meeting once. But I think that our last meetings, I mean the meetings of the Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents, have been useful. Perhaps, when we first began our dialogue, we could not imagine that our cooperation will be so useful for the solution of the conflict.


We considered many problems. But we need time to come to some conclusion; we need time for meetings and negotiations. Of course, mutual compromises are necessary. It will be impossible to settle the conflict without a reciprocal compromise. Robert Setrakovich, I know what compromises can be done. In one word, our negotiations will continue hence.


I am satisfied with the result of our negotiations. We can hardly say anything else for today. Thank you for the attention. Thank you for coming here. I greet those who have come here from Armenia, particularly President Robert Kocharian and his delegation here in Azerbaijan. I greet the representatives of the mass media of Armenia who are here, and I thank all the re[porters – both Azerbaijani and Armenian reporters for their attention to our meeting, to this problem.”


Robert Kocharian: “I want to add some words. One of the presidents spoke about the compromises. I must say that we mainly discussed the degree of compromises, in other words, the rapprochement to each other in the process of negotiations. Regulation means just this. Otherwise, it may appear that President Aliyev spoke of compromises, President Kocharian did not. Therefore, I am pleased with what was said here, and of course, I thank you for the hospitality. But I do not know whether a ram has been given to us?”


Heydar Aliyev: “Don’t worry about it, we have flocks of sheep, I saw them by the road when we came here. The shepherds may slaughter rams and treat us with kebab here, and then we can come to a real consent.” 

Robert Kocharian: “Next time we need a breakfast, dinner or supper her, I liked this spot very much.”

Heydar Aliyev: “Yes, it is possible, it is a good spot. Thanks to those who have organized our meeting here, the conditions are good here. We also can say that this room is not inferior to the room in which we met in Geneva. Have you your car here?”

Robert Kocharian: “Yes, it is here.”


Heydar Aliyev: “Thank you, good-bye!”