AZERBAIJAN-OSCE

Azerbaijan joined CSCE (from January 1, 1995- OSCE) on January 30, 1992. It should be noted that OSCE was the first European organization participated by Azerbaijan.

Beginning from February of 1992 the Armenian-Azeri conflict turned to the object of the more rapt attention of the OSCE members in accordance with the principles of the organization. The first special mission of OSCE was opened in Azerbaijan for the purpose in mid February.

The discussions related to the Armenian-Azeri conflict were for the first time conducted at the session of the OSCE Committee for Senior Officials on February 27-28. The document that confirmed the belonging of Nagorny Karabakh to Azerbaijan reflected the appeal for the peaceful settlement of the conflict with alterations in borders.

The situation in Nagorny Karabakh was discussed at the first additional meeting of the OSCE Council of Foreign Ministers on March 24, 1992. The session participants decided to convene the OSCE Minsk conference on the peaceful settlement of Armenian-Azeri conflict.

Azerbaijan for the first time took part in the OSCE Summit, held in Helsinki on June 8-10 of 1992 and singed a number of its documents.

Azerbaijan joined the Paris Charter of OSCE on December 20, 1993.

The Budapest summit of OSCE was conducted on December 5-6 of 1994. As a result of the summit CSCE turned to the European organization OSCE aiming to determine the rules of the coexistence in new Europe, to provide for the peace, democracy and human rights protection and to apply the principles of mutually profitable cooperation and security of the member-states from January 1, 1995.

The Budapest Summit for the first time carried out a decision on the establishment of peacekeeping forces to participate in the security measures of Europe and their stationing in the conflict areas. The OSCE member-states reached an agreement to send the first peacekeeping groups to Nagorny Karabakh. Moreover, the co-chair institute was established in frames of the Minsk process in Budapest. As a result of the Budapest summit on the Armenian-Azeri conflict adopted the resolution on the intensification of the activity of OSCE in connection with the Nagorny Karabakh conflict.

The High Level Planning Group on the Azeri-Armenian conflict, composed of the military representatives appointed by the OSCE member states was established in Vienna by results of the Budapest Summit on December 20, 1994.

The co-chairmanship institution of the Minsk process was first headed by Finland and Russia and then in 1995-1997 by Sweden and Russia.

The position of the personal envoy of the OSCE Chair for the conflict discussed by the Minsk Conference was created on August 28, 1995. The ambassador Anzhey Kasrpshik (Poland) has held the position since January 1, 1997.

The declaration of the general and comprehensive security model in Europe was adopted by 54 states participating in the OSCE summit in Lisbon December 2-3, 1996.

The declaration fixed the threats to the security in the member-states and stressed the necessity for cooperation in the prevention of the threats.

The participants of the Lisbon summit (except for Armenia) agreed on the following principles in the settlement of Armenian-Azeri conflict:

1. The territorial integrity of Armenia and Azerbaijan;
2. The attachment of the highest autonomous status to Nagorny Karabakh:
3. the ensuring of the security of the entire population of Nagorny Karabakh.

The Minsk group has been chaired by USA, Russia and France since January 1, 1997.

The Minsk group involves the following co-chairs:

The Minsk Group comprises the following members (according to the official information of the OSCE):

1. USA
2. Germany
3. Azerbaijan
4. Belarus
5. Armenia
6. Sweden
7. Italy
8. Netherlands
9. Portugal
10. Russia
11. Turkey
12. Finland
13. France

The co-chairs of the Minsk group introduced three proposals related to the settlement of Armenian-Azeri conflict. The first two proposals were not accepted by Armenia, the third by Azerbaijan.

Azerbaijan that participated in the regular summit of the state and government leaders of OSCE member-states held in Istanbul on November 18-19, 1999 joined the Istanbul Declaration and European Security Charter.

Azerbaijan established close cooperation with the Democratic Institutions and Human Rights Bureau. The Organization has been maintaining close cooperation with the government of Azerbaijan and implementing a number of projects in the sphere of democratization, the supremacy of the law, the improvement of the legislation especially electoral law, migration, equality of genders and other fields. It takes an active part in the Presidential, Parliamentary and Municipal elections conducted in Azerbaijan.

The government of Azerbaijan attaches the great importance to the cooperation with the representative of the OSCE on the freedom of press. The seminar "The development of freedom of press in Azerbaijan and responsibility" initiated by the OSCE Representation for the Freedom of Press and the Foreign Ministry of Azerbaijan for the young reporters of Azerbaijan in December of 2001 was an important step for the expansion of the cooperation between the representation and the government of Azerbaijan and the ethics of the reporters as well as for the discussion of a number of other issues.

Azerbaijan as a full member of OSCE established relations with the High Commissar for the National Minorities. Yet, despite the mandate of the High Commissar (the mandate stipulates for the wide operation of the Commissar in the places of the possible development of a conflict) and the achievements of our country in the sphere of the protection of the national minorities' rights and the conduction of due measures, the cooperation between Azerbaijan and the High Commissar has not yet achieved a high level and is not carried out permanently.

The Milli Medjlis of Azerbaijan maintain close relations with the Parliamentary Assembly of OSCE that is composed of over 300 deputies. The deputies representing Azerbaijan in the Parliamentary Assembly of OSCE participate in its sessions every year.

The 318th resolution of the permanent council of OSCE on the establishment of the OSCE office in Baku was adopted on November 16, 1999.

The Memorandum of the Mutual Understanding signed on November 25, 1999 following the adoption of the resolution of the OSCE Permanent Council promoted the expansion of the cooperation between OSCE and Azerbaijan.

The official opening ceremony of OSCE Baku Office took place on July 18, 2000.

The special OSCE Group of Friends was established in Azerbaijan due to the importance attached by our country to the effective development of the cooperation between OSCE and Azerbaijan.
top