CSCE First Additional Meeting of the Ministerial Council, Helsinki, 24 March 1992

3. The Ministers expressed their deep concern about the continuing escalation of the armed conflict in and around Nagorno-Karabakh and the resulting increased suffering and loss of life of the inhabitants. They held an extensive discussion of ways and means to end the conflict, bearing in mind the implications for regional and international security which could result from its continuation and further extension. They called upon all parties to exercise restraint.

4. The Ministers reiterated in the strongest terms the call for an immediate and effective cease-fire including an active commitment by responsible local commanders to its implementation. They issued an appeal for the re-establishment of conditions for confidence and constructive dialogue, including the cessation of measures of economic and political constraint.

5. The Ministers reviewed the ongoing action within the CSCE framework and endorsed in their entirety the decisions taken by the Committee of Senior Officials. They expressed their appreciation for the activities of the Chairman-in-Office of the CSCE undertaken in this connection and stressed their willingness to extend all possible assistance to him whenever it is needed.

6. The Ministers welcomed the complementary efforts made by the European Community and its member States, by the member States of the Commonwealth of Independent States, by the members of the North Atlantic Co-operation Council, and, in particular, the efforts made by the United Nations Secretary-General.

They requested the Chairman-in-Office of the CSCE to keep in close contact with the United Nations in this respect and to arrange for regular exchanges of information.

The Ministers agreed that the CSCE must play a major role in promoting a peace process relating to the conflict. They agreed that the situation in and around Nagorno-Karabakh requires further CSCE action.

7. The Ministers mandated the Chairman-in-Office of the CSCE Council of Ministers, Mr. Jirí Dienstbier, to visit the region shortly in order to contribute, in particular, to the establishment and maintenance of an effective cease-fire as well as to the establishment of a framework for an overall peaceful settlement.

8. The Ministers expressed their firm conviction that a conference on Nagorno-Karabakh under the auspices of the CSCE would provide an ongoing forum for negotiations towards a peaceful settlement of the crisis on the basis of the principles, commitments and provisions of the CSCE. The Ministers therefore requested the Chairman-in-Office of the CSCE Council of Ministers to convene such a conference as soon as possible.

9. The Ministers furthermore agreed that this Conference, which will take place in Minsk, will have as participants Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Czech and Slovak Federal Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Russian Federation, Sweden, Turkey and United States of America. Elected and other representatives of Nagorno-Karabakh will be invited to the Conference as interested parties by the Chairman of the Conference after consultation with the States participating at the Conference. The Chairman-in-Office of the CSCE Council will appoint the Chairman of the Conference on Nagorno-Karabakh under the auspices of the CSCE.

10. The Ministers urged all CSCE participating States and all concerned parties to take all necessary steps to ensure that humanitarian assistance is provided to all those in need through rapid and effective means including safe corridors under international control.

11. The Ministers noted the commitment of Armenia and Azerbaijan to fully support the mission of the Chairman-in-Office of the CSCE Council to the region as well as other actions on which the CSCE Council has agreed and appeal to these two countries to pursue actively this commitment to reach a lasting, peaceful solution.