US State Department Principal Deputy Spokesperson Vedant Patel has said in a press briefing on Thursday (18 May) that the US welcomes any dialogue between Armenia and Azerbaijan, regardless of location.
Patel was commenting as the foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan, Ararat Mirzoyan and Jeyhun Bayramov, are preparing to meet in Moscow on Friday (19 May).
Asked how the United States views the upcoming talks in Moscow at a ministerial level, Patel said:
"We continue to provide full support and engagement of the United States as these two countries work to secure a durable and dignified peace. We welcome the reports that the parties are going to continue to engage in these discussions, and we reiterate that – our conviction that peace is within reach and that direct dialogue is key to resolving these issues.
"Our view is that direct talks between the parties are of utmost importance, and we’re glad to see them happen and take place. Whether they are taking place in Arlington, in Brussels, in Moscow, our support with this effort will continue to endure."
Patel added that, despite significant tension between the US and Russia, Washington does maintain diplomatic ties with Moscow because there are "issues between our two countries that we need to ensure are talked about responsibly, appropriately".