Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Armenian - Azeri Presidents to meet in August

A1 Plus and PanArmenian.net report that the Armenian and Azerbaijani Presidents will probably meet on the sidelines of a CIS summit in August. This will mark a continuation of the current new round of negotiations to find a solution to the frozen conflict between the two countries over the mainly Armenian inhabited territory of Nagorno Karabagh.

In related news, PanArmenian.net also reports that that the Azerbaijani Foreign Minister says that the issue of restoring and sharing road and communications networks was touched upon.
In his words, Baku suggests road shared use and hopes Yerevan will accept the proposal, as the parties are interested in reliable communications. Azimov reported that the common road route is planned to pass next to Aghdam, Stepanakert, Shushi, then Goris region of Armenia, Sisyan with further outlet to Nakhichevan. [...] It was also known that to make progress in the Karabakh conflict settlement a donor conference will be convened and international peacekeeping forces will secure the communication, reported Regnum news agency.
Actually, this is very interesting news with regards to Shikahogh. Although the proposed new road through the reserve is believed to be no better than that which already exists from the Iranian border to the Armenian city of Kapan, an alternate route does exist -- via Zangelan in Armenian-controlled Azerbaijan. For now, however, the fact that there is no peace deal -- phased or otherwise -- makes such a route sensitive to say the least.

However, within the framework of a peace deal, it is ideal. The route is less mountainous and long stretches of the road are flat and straight.

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