The Azerbaijani president, Ilham Aliyev, said yesterday (13 February), that Armenia and Azerbaijan should sign a peace treaty.
During a visit to a Mosque under reconstruction in Aghdam, Aliyev said that the two neighbours should sign a treaty based on the mutual recognition of the territorial integrity of states, according to the norms and principles of international law.
The Armenian prime minister, Nikol Pashinyan, made similar comments last week, stating that Armenia was interested and ready to sign a peace agreement.
Aliyev went on to say that Armenians had ruined and desecrated Azerbaijani heritage, and that Azerbaijanis “should never forget the evil done in our lands”. He added that he was confident “that the work we are doing today, including the work in the field of army building, will further strengthen Azerbaijan and serve as a good response to the revanchist forces in Armenia. We are on our own land. We have returned to this land by shedding blood and giving martyrs. We are standing firm in this land and will live on it forever. Karabakh is Azerbaijan!”
Armenia and Azerbaijan are embroiled in an ongoing dispute over the preservation of cultural heritage. Both sides have accused each other of destroying, or attempting to destroy, religious and historical monuments. During a virtual meeting between Aliyev and Pashinayn held on 4 February, the leaders reached an agreement on a UNESCO mission to be sent to both countries.