At a news conference on Tuesday (25 July), Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan defended his commitment to recognise Nagorno-Karabakh as part of Azerbaijan in any future peace agreement, saying that Armenia "cannot decide the fate of the people of Nagorno-Karabakh".
He said that their position on the issue followed "the logic that Nagorno-Karabakh’s representatives themselves must be a party to negotiations [and] dialogue [with Azerbaijan]".
"This is the agenda that we are furthering, bearing in mind that the rights and security of Nagorno-Karabakh should be discussed with the participation of Nagorno-Karabakh’s representatives in the format of a Baku-Stepanakert dialogue and within the framework of an international mechanism. And I think that the people, the representatives, the government of Nagorno-Karabakh will have an opportunity to address all issues preoccupying them within the framework of this formula," Pashinyan said.
De facto authorities in Nagorno-Karabakh have continuously denounced Pashinyan's stance, which he made clear in May of this year and has been confirmed by statements made by the European Council President Charles Michel after numerous multilateral meetings with Pashinyan and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev.
Responding to Pashinyan's comments late on Tuesday, the State Minister of the self-declared Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Gurgen Nersisyan called on Prime Minister Pashinyan to abandon his position.