A series of direct contacts between Azerbaijan and Armenia have brought hope to the two countries’ decades-long impasse over Nagorno-Karabakh, a conflict that began as the Soviet Union collapsed. But while these meetings, on the heels of a change in power in the Armenian capital, bring new dynamism, much has to be done before true progress is possible.
2019 started off on an optimistic note in the context of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. On 16 January, Armenian foreign minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan and Azerbaijani FM Elmar Mammadyarov met in Paris for the fourth time over the last nine months. The result was a rather upbeat press release by the OSCE Minsk Group mediating the peace process, stating that both parties agreed to take “concrete measures to prepare the populations for peace”.