Historical background to the document "Statement of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev at the Summit of CIS" (Ashgabat, December 24, 1993)

On September 20, 1993, the Supreme Soviet of the Republic of Azerbaijan adopted a decision on joining the Community of Independent States and its Collective Security Treaty. The chairman of the parliament of Azerbaijan and Acing President of the country Heydar Aliyev who arrived in Moscow, signed the documents (Alma-Ata Declaration, Collective Security Treaty) which assured Azerbaijan`s joining the CIS. At that time Heydar Aliyev said Azerbaijan`s becoming a member of the CIS would contribute to the development of mutual cooperation in the spheres of economy, finance and others. (The Republic of Azerbaijan at the Community of Independent States, Baku-2001, p. 3, 5)

In response to Armenia`s occupation of Nagorno-Karabakh and 7 adjacent districts, its expansion of aggression, President of Azerbaijan Heyydar Aliyev made a statement at the Ashgabat Summit of the CIS on December 2, 1994. The statement said that aggression by one CIS member against another one was unacceptable and called on immediate withdrawal of Armenian armed forces from all the occupied Azerbaijani territories, return of Azerbaijani IDPs to their homes who were forced out of those territories. Heydar Aliyev also demanded compensation of damage to Azerbaijan as a result of the aggression and CIS to guarantee it.

Heydar Aliyev shed light to the status of Nagorno-Karabakh which was the been a major Armenian pretext at the negotiations: "Ignoring the UN Security Council resolutions and mediation efforts by the OSCE, Russia and Kazakhstan, the Republic of Armenia tries to force us to recognize the Nagorn-Karabakh Armenians as an independent part at negotiations in order to cover its real role, a role of the country who is a directly aggressor. In reality, nearly more than one hundred thousand Armenians living in the Nagorno-Karabakh lack substantial reserves, cannot wage large-scale military operations and occupy 20 percent of the territory of a country with 8 million population".

Armenia could realize those occupations with the support of the outside powers, Diaspora organizations and bodies.

Responding to the statements the CIS continued its activity at its following Summits to achieve a concrete result in the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. It is especially related to the Moscow meting of the organization on April 15, 1994. Acted as a mediator for the settlement of the conflict from Russia, Vladimir Kazimirov noted that the declaration made at the meting urging the sides to sign a ceasefire, as a basis document leading to the ceasefire, called as "Bishkek protocol" (Vladimir Kazimirov, Peace to Karabakh (anatomy of settlement/www.kazimirov.ru)

The CIS Summits continued to stay as events where Azerbaijani and Armenian presidents hold direct negotiations. Presidents Ilham Aliyev and Robert Kocharyan met and held discussions o the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict at the non-official meeting of the heads of states held in St. Petersburg last time, in June 2007. A little later, a group of Azerbaijani and Armenian intellectuals visited Azerbaijan, Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh in order to build mutual confidence and trust. (http://www.mediaforum.az/)

Historical background was updated on July 4, 2007.