Former Karabakh Army chief, Lieutenant General Samvel Babayan urges dialoge with Azerbaijan. Babayan said in an interview with Armenian weekly that having a direct dialoge between the authorities of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (NKR) and the Azerbaijani leadership is the most appropriate way of finding a solution to the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over that region. On the other hand Babayan also stated that the NKR Defencse Ministry should take all measures needed to increase its readiness to counter an anticipated assault by Azerbaijan. Babayan said his release from jail two months ago as part of an amnesty was not connected in any way with the Karabakh conflict. Babayan was sentenced in February 2001 to 14 years' imprisonment on charges of trying to assassinate NKR President Arkadii Ghukasian.