On 05 March, Azeri Foreign Minister Elmar Mammedyarov received the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s (OSCE) new head (officially titled Chairperson-in-Office) Miroslav Lajcak to discuss recent developments regarding the Nagorno Karabakh peace negotiations.
Mr Mammedyarov expressed his opinions on the recent comments made by Armenian prime minister Nikol Pashinyan, mentioning that the recent comments made by the Armenia’s leadership regarding the Karabakh issue, possibly referring to a new formula where Stepanakert would return to the negotiating table, has had negative effects on the ongoing negotiation process.
OSCE head Mirslav Lajcak mentioned the decrease in ceasefire violations both on the Line of Contact as well as on the Azerbaijan-Armenia border and expressed further perspectives towards a comprehensive peace agreement for the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, as well as co-operation between the OSCE and Azerbaijan.
Lajcak also met with president Ilham Aliyev and with the head of the Azeri Community of Nagorno Karabakh, Tural Ganjaliyev, an organisation which has recently seen an increase in media activity as to promote a counterbalance to Stepanakert rejoining the negotiation table.
The delegation from Slovakia also discussed bilateral co-operation between the two countries, particularly on trade and economic as well as investment opportunities.
In recent years, the two countries were involved in an arms trade scandal, with Slovakia selling artillery and other heavy weaponry to Azerbaijan through Israel. By exporting to Azerbaijan through Israel, Slovakia sought to avoid an arms ban that the European Union maintains against Armenia and Azerbaijan, as warring fractions in the Nagorno Karabakh conflict.