At the conclusion of a summit in Tehran on Monday, the foreign ministers of Iran, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Russia and Turkey issued a communique pledging to recognize the inviolability of each other’s borders.
Iran’s foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian had invited the summit, known as the “Consultative Regional 3+3 Platform,” which was attended by foreign ministers Ararat Mirzoyan of Armenia, Sergey Lavrov of Russian, Jeyhum Bayramov of Azerbaijan and Hakan Fidan of Turkey.
During the meeting Mirzoyan emphasized the need to address “very complicated problems” in the region, “otherwise, the region is doomed to remain in the past.”
Stressing that it will not be possible to implement future plans if “the red lines of regional coexistence defined by international law are not respected by all,” Mirzoyan indicated that the goals and principles of the United Nations Charter and in particular the exclusion of the use of force and the threat of force, the principles of territorial integrity, sovereignty, inviolability of borders and the protection of fundamental human rights should be the guidelines.
“Furthermore, it is important to adhere to these principles both in our actions and in our rhetoric. In conditions of aggressive and threatening rhetoric, it is difficult to imagine the creation of a favorable environment, which will allow the implementation of ambitious regional projects. Armenia, for its part, is loyal to those principles,” Mirzoyan told his counterparts in Tehran.
The Untied States used caution when discussing the summit, with State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller telling reporters on Monday that some of the countries involved in the initiative were not “reliable partners.”
“We welcome any good-faith engagements that contribute to peace and stability for the people of the South Caucasus regardless of where those talks happen or who is hosting them. But that being said, we recognize the South Caucasus’ delicate geographic position regarding Iran and Russia, but we have not found these countries to be reliable partners, to understate matters,” Miller said.
The following are the nine points highlighted in the statement:
- Taking into account the importance of developing friendly relations between countries based on mutual interests and good neighborliness, they emphasized in this regard the importance of peaceful settlement of disputes, respect for sovereignty, political independence, territorial integrity, inviolability of internationally recognized borders, non-interference in internal affairs, prohibition on the threat or use of force and respect for human rights based on all the principles of the United Nations Charter;
- While expressing their views on various international issues, they discussed the most significant issues in the region and emphasized the importance of platforms like the Consultative Regional Platform “3+3” in providing opportunities for constructive dialogue and establishing mutually beneficial cooperation between the countries of the region that have the primary role in this regard;
- Highlighted the positive impact of the economic cooperation on strengthening mutual trust, the well-being of nations and the stability of the region;
- Emphasizing the importance of cultural cooperation, people-to-people contacts and joint projects in the field of education, science, tourism, culture and sports;
- In order to enhance lasting peace and economic development of the region, they will strengthen bilateral and multilateral consultation and interaction;
- Welcoming the ongoing processes of normalization and development of relations between all the countries of the region;
- While positively evaluating the results of this meeting, they reaffirmed the openness of this Platform for equal participation of Georgia;
- The Ministers also exchanged views on the situation in Gaza. They emphasized the need for immediate termination of targeting innocent civilians;
- The Foreign Ministers of the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Republic of Turkey and the Russian Federation thanked the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran for the good reception and successful holding of this meeting.
“With an assessment of the regular meetings of the “3+3” Regional Platform in expanding and strengthening the environment of trust and cooperation in the region, they agreed that the next meeting will be held in Turkey on a date that will be coordinated through diplomatic channels,” the announcement concluded.
Arthur Khachatryan, a lawmaker representing the opposition Hayastan bloc in Armenia’s parliament, said Tuesday that the Tehran announcement should compel Azerbaijan to pull out its troops from Armenia’s sovereign territories.
“The definition of the territorial integrity, according to the Helsinki Final Act, means the resolution of territorial disputes peacefully. Yes, all countries, especially neighbors, must resolve relations without the use of force. Thus, Azerbaijan, who adopted that statement yesterday, should pull back its occupying troops from Vayots Dzor, Syunik and Gegharkunik as early as today,” Khahtryan said Tuesday.
“But having adopted such a statement on one hand, and simultaneously maintaining its occupying troops in Armenia, Azerbaijan is sending out a clear message that it does not intend to go for peace if that peace treaty is short of a capitulation statement by Armenia,” the lawmaker added.
Khachatryan said that Armenia must take all measures to ensure its territorial integrity and the political rights of the people of Nagorno-Karabakh, including their right to self-determination.