The U.S. State Department recently appointed Andrew Schofer as the new U.S. co-chair for the OSCE (Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) Minsk Group for Nagorno-Karabakh, a multinational agency created 25 years ago to advance peace efforts in Azerbaijan.
Schofer is well versed in international concerns, having been charge d’ affaires, a.i. (interim diplomatic head), deputy chief and counselor for the U.S. Mission to International Organizations in Vienna (UNVIE). Previously he served as deputy chief at the U.S. Embassy in Nicosia, Cyprus, as well as embassies in Kuwait, Bahrain and Moscow. a State Department release said.
Established in 1992, the Minsk Group is administered by the U.S., France, and the Russian Federation. The State Department conveyed its continuing commitment to reaching an enduring solution to regional conflicts, stating that the U.S. “supports a just settlement that must be based on international law, which includes the Helsinki Final Act; in particular, the principles of non-use of force, territorial integrity, and self-determination.”
The efforts put forth by the Minsk Group are commonly referred to as the Minsk Process, according to the organization’s website and strive to find peaceful resolution to ongoing conflict in the mountainous Nagorno-Karabakh region of southwest Azerbaijan located in the South Caucasus.
State Department officials also conveyed news of Schofer’s appointment to the Armenian and Azerbaijan governments.