‘The Khojaly tragedy — spot on the whole of Europe’

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News.Az reprints from 1news.az an interview with Mike Hancock, a member of the British Parliament from the Liberal Democratic Party.

Can we expect any significant changes in the foreign policy of Armenia after the presidential elections in Armenia?

It would be in the best interests for Armenia if it were to rethink its foreign policy. If it doesn’t then I think this stale mate will continue and it’s against their own interests for this to go on the way it is. I hope things will change.

One of the main postulates in the election campaign of incumbent president of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan became the promise to launch the airport built in occupied Nagorno Karabakh soon.How may this step (if it would be taken) affect the situation in the region?

I think this will lead to further tension in the region with more instability and it greatly raises the level of concern for all parties. It should not proceed.

What will be with settlement of Karabakh conflict this year?

It’s highly unlikely for a settlement to be made this year, although I hope and pray for one as soon as possible.

What events should be expected in the South Caucasus this year?

I cannot predict what will happen this year.

Can the UK be a mediator in the settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict?

I wish it would and could but the remedy must come from nearer Karabakh. I think Russia need to make its final decision on whether they want to see this resolved. I believe it is in their interests for Karabakh to be returned. The sooner this happens the better.

This year marks the 21 anniversary of the tragedy in Khojaly. What can you say about this tragedy?

This is a stain on the whole of Europe that we allowed it to happen. It is also a stain on the reputation of Armenia. There is a lasting legacy that will be with Armenia for generations to come. It is not something that is easy to forgive or to forget and was an atrocious crime against humanity.