Azerbaijan says Baku, Yerevan may finalize peace treaty in few months

Azerbaijan and Armenia may finalize the text of a peace treaty within a few months, President Ilham Aliyev stated while accepting the credentials of Canada's new ambassador to the country, Kevin Hamilton.

“I think we can finalize the text of the peace treaty, at least its basic principles, within a few months,” Aliyev said as quoted on the president’s website.

“I note that during the occupation, the plan of the mediators (OSCE Minsk Group) was to come to an agreement on the basic principles, called the Madrid Principles. They were to be initialed and then a text was to be drawn up. We believe that this could be an option – to agree on the basic principles, initial them and then work on the text [of the peace treaty].”

At the same time, the Azerbaijani leader emphasized that the peace agreement can be signed only if Armenia changes its constitution.

“The main condition [for signing] the peace agreement is to change Armenia’s constitution, because it contains territorial claims against Azerbaijan. And until this [change] happens, the peace agreement will not be signed,” Aliyev added.

Armenia and Azerbaijan have engaged in a series of bloody confrontations since both republics declared independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. The two countries fought a war over the self-proclaimed republic of Nagorno-Karabakh in 2020, and Azerbaijani forces clashed with the province’s separatist forces in 2023. The conflict ended with the dissolution of Nagorno-Karabakh’s government and the return of the province to Azerbaijani control.

Although situated inside Azerbaijani territory, Nagorno-Karabakh was governed by ethnic Armenian separatists until last year. Before the fall of the USSR, the province had ruled itself as an autonomous region within the Azerbaijan SSR.

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