Tuesday, April 23, 2024
HomeWorldAsiaArmenian PM hopes for peace deal with Azerbaijan

Armenian PM hopes for peace deal with Azerbaijan

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan stated on Thursday that Armenia hoped to conclude a peace agreement with Azerbaijan and establish diplomatic relations in the coming months, according to Reuters.

In the coming months [we hope] we shall sign with Azerbaijan an agreement on peace and the establishment of diplomatic relations.

Last month, Azerbaijan carried out a lightning military operation in Nagorno-Karabakh, sparking a mass exodus of 120,000 ethnic Armenians to Armenia.

Azerbaijani Prime Minister Ali Asadov stated that Baku favoured peace and the restoration of transport links with Armenia from 2020, but that progress depended on Yerevan’s willingness to act.

Nagorno-Karabakh, internationally recognised as part of Azerbaijan, was ruled by ethnic Armenians from the collapse of the Soviet Union in the 1990s until last month.

Pashinyan also claimed on Thursday that Armenia hoped to open the border with Turkey to third-country nationals and diplomatic passport holders. The border has been closed since 1993, when Turkey severed relations with Armenia amid the Baku-Yerevan war.

Pashinyan’s statement that he sees no advantage in keeping Russian military bases in Armenia drew a mixed reaction in the Kremlin, which asked for clarification of the prime minister’s comments. According to the Armenian news agency, Pashinyan also said that Yerevan “does not discuss” the call for Russia to withdraw its troops from Armenia.

Russia has several military facilities in Armenia, which remains a treaty ally of Moscow. However, relations between the two countries have soured in recent months, with Armenia accusing Moscow of failing to support it against Azerbaijan, with which Russia is also allied.

In turn, Moscow has accused Pashinyan of neglecting Armenia’s traditional close ties with Russia and increasingly turning towards the West.

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