Azerbaijan has proposed to negotiate a peace treaty with Armenia through direct, one-on-one negotiations at a mutually acceptable venue that includes the border between the two countires.
The proposal comes as Yerevan announced on Tuesday that it has submitted another proposal to Baku on the peace agreement.
“Azerbaijan is ready for direct bilateral negotiations with Armenia for the early conclusion of a peace agreement,” Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.
“We believe that the two countries should decide the future of their relations together. This stagnation in negotiations does not contribute to the stability of the region,” it added.
“The responsibility for the continuation of the peace process, including the choice of a mutually acceptable venue or the decision to meet at the state border, belongs to the two countries,” said the Azerbaijani statement, which also urged Armenia to “avoid new unnecessary delays.”
Azerbaijan has been avoiding mediation efforts from the West, including overtures from the United States and France. Baku canceled scheduled talks in Washington between the foreign ministers of the two countries, which was to be hosted by Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday.
President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan also did not attend scheduled EU-mediate talks with Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan in Granada, Spain last month, yet he demanded the “return” of eight Azerbaijani villages “occupied by Armenia.”
In its statement regarding the new proposals, Armenia’s foreign ministry said that Yerevan “remains committed to concluding and signing a document on normalization of relations based on previously announced principles.”
Yerevan’s statements followed Pashinyan’s remarks on Saturday at the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly in Yerevan, where he urged Baku to publicly commit to the key principles for the peace treaty, that include the recognition of each other’s territorial integrity, the delimitation of borders based on a 1991 treaty and the opening of regional trade routes.
In a recent statement, Baku rejected mediation efforts by the U.S. and France for their so-called “pro-Armenian” bias.
Over the weekend, Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry said that Baku prefers “direct talks” with Yerevan, while remaining open to EU-mediated negotiations with Armenia.
Azerbaijan’s parliament on Tuesday condemned the U.S. Senate for adopting the “Armenian Protection Act of 2023,” a measure that approved last week that blocks U.S. Military Aid to Azerbaijan