By Abdul Kerimkhanov
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said that there is stalemate around the Nagorno-Karabakh peace negations between Armenia and Azerbaijan.
“The situation on the contact line has been quite calm lately, and there are few minor incidents.The bodies of killed people were exchanged and exchange of detainees is underway to a very small extent. Nevertheless, there is some process going on. The OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs on Nagorno-Karabakh conflict’s settlement - Russia, France, the US - work closely, they met three times already this year, I think, with the foreign ministers, including in April in Moscow with my participation.
“Regarding the situation on the ground, I would say that it’s calmer now than a year ago. However, the political process has slowed down and for now it is impossible to get rid of this,” Lavrov said.
Lavrov made the remarks during the 16th annual meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club in Russia’s Sochi city on October 2.
The official however, ruled out the resumption of the war between the two countries, saying, “I don’t see any obvious danger here or resumption of some major actions”. Lavrov underlined that Russia will do everything possible to ensure that the war is not resumed.
The Russian Foreign Minister said that his country and the two other co-chairing countries – the U.S. and France - have a “unified vision” about the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution.
“We have basic documents - we don’t want to reconsider them, we want to seek a solution based on these principles that have been discussed many times. But the solution must, of course, be found through direct dialogue,” Lavrov concluded.
The Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign ministers met in New York on 23 September in New York for another round of peace talks. It should be noted that a soldier of the Azerbaijani army was killed by Armenian forces just a day before the negotiations.
Armenia and Azerbaijan are locked in a conflict over Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh region, which along with seven other regions were occupied by Armenian forces in a war in the early 1990s. Around one million Azerbaijanis were displaced as a result of the large-scale hostilities that were started by the Armenian forces due to territorial claims against Baku.
A temporary cease-fire agreement was signed between the countries in 1994, however a final peace deal has not been reached yet. Peace negotiations mediated by the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs have yielded no results to this date.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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