No concrete agreements reported after Armenian and Azerbaijani FMs meet in Moscow

No concrete agreements between Armenia and Azerbaijan were reported by the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov after he met his counterparts Ararat Mirzoyan and Jeyhun Bayramov in Moscow for talks on Tuesday (25 July).

He described the talks as "useful", and stressed the need to address concerns of a looming humanitarian crisis in Nagorno-Karabakh resulting from what has been widely characterised as a blockade of the Lachin Corridor connecting Armenia to Nagorno-Karabakh by Azerbaijan.

Since December last year, reports of shortages of basic supplies have grown more frequent and de facto authorities in the region have recently halted all non-essential surgeries and medical checkups, as well as suspending public transport.

Speaking on the prospects of signing a peace treaty, Lavrov said that "The path is not easy [...] there are quite a few complex and important issues to be resolved."

"The most sensitive of them was and remains the problem of guaranteeing the rights and security of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh in the context of ensuring the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan in full accordance with the 1991 Declaration signed by the leaders of the former Soviet republics in Almaty. Its validity is confirmed today by both the Azerbaijani and Armenian leadership," Lavrov said.

Lavrov added that the Armenian government "understands the need to convince the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh to meet as soon as possible with Azerbaijani representatives" and ascertain their "rights" in accordance with international conventions designed to protect ethnic minorities.

Lavrov also indicated that Armenia and Azerbaijan are much closer to working out modalities of planned transport links between each other, did not say when such an agreement might be finalised by the Russian-Armenian-Azerbaijani task force dealing with the matter.

source: with agencies
photo: RFE/RL