MILAN—Armenia’s Acting Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan and the Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov met Wednesday in the Italian city on the sidelines of the OSCE Summit of Foreign Ministers. Also in attendance at the talks were the OSCE Minsk Gourp Co-Chairman, tasked with mediating a resolution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
The co-chairs, Stéphane Visconti of France and Andrew Schofer of the United States, accompanied by the personal representative of the OSCE chairman-in-office Andrzej Kasprzyk, hailed the significant decline of ceasefire violations that they attributed to an agreement reached by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev during a conversation in Dushanbe, Tajikistan in November.
The Co-chairs urged the sides to abide to the agreements reached in Dushanbe and take concrete measures to preparing citizens of both countries for peace. The Co-chairs hoped that in the near future an intensive dialogue aimed at reaching concrete results between the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan may resume for reaching a just and firm resolution to the conflict.
Mnatsakanyan and Mammadyarov reaffirmed their willingness to continue the intensive efforts aimed at de-escalating tensions and reaching a resolution to the conflict. The Armenian and Azerbaijani foreign ministers expressed their appreciation to the mediators’ efforts, as well as the activities of the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office.
The OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairmen issued a statement following the Mnatsakanyan-Mammadyarov meeting, in which they said the sides “confirmed that the level of violence has fallen significantly since they reaffirmed in Dushanbe their commitment to reduce tensions.”
“The Co-Chairs welcomed these developments, commended the sides for implementing constructive measures in good faith, and expressed support for the leaders’ readiness to continue their dialogue,” said the statement. “The Co-Chairs stressed the importance of sustaining a climate of trust for intensive negotiations on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.”