Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan during a telephone conversation on Tuesday discussed the ongoing blockade of the Lachin Corridor with President Vladimir Putin of Russia.
Pashinyan’s press office said that the prime minister discussed the humanitarian crisis that has resulted in Artsakh because of the weeks-long “illegal blockade” of the Lachin Corridor and “attached importance to necessary steps from Russia of overcoming it.”
Within this contest, the activities of the Russian peacekeeping mission in Nagorno-Karabakh was also discussed, according to Pashinyan’s press office.
Pashinyan and Putin also discussed issues pertaining to the implementation of agreements signed by the leaders of Armenia, Russia and Azerbaijan, among them the November 9, 2020 statement, which specifically calls for the unimpeded flow of transportation along the Lachin Corridor.
For its part, the Kremlin said that the meeting was held at Armenia’s request and did not mention a discussion on the Lachin Corridor blockade.
“The current situation around Nagorno-Karabakh was discussed with an emphasis on the importance of consistent implementation of the entire set of trilateral agreements between the leaders of Russia, Armenia and Azerbaijan,” the Kremlin said in its readout of the call.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held a telephone conversation on Tuesday with his Azerbaijani counterpart Jeyhun Bayramov. The two reportedly discussed “ways to settle the situation in the Lachin Corridor,” the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement.
“The importance of resuming the work of Armenian-Azerbaijan normalization by all means on the basis of the trilateral agreements of the leaders of Russia, Armenia and Azerbaijan was emphasized,” added the statement.
“The Russian side confirmed its readiness to organize another round of negotiations between the foreign ministers of the two countries on the issue of the peace treaty between Armenia and Azerbaijan in Moscow,” the statement said.
Official Baku has been reluctant to admit that it has allowed the blockade of the only road connecting Artsakh to Armenia since December 12, with Azerbaijani officials often sending mixed messages on the matter.
On the one hand, President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan and Bayramov himself have hinted that there is no blockade at the Lachin Corridor. At other times, both leaders and other Azerbaijani officials have praised the work of the so-called environmental activists who have been blockading the road since December 12, saying that their allegations of wrongdoing have merit and is supported by Baku.
Lavrov said last week that Bayramov had claimed that Armenia was transporting mines through the Lachin Corridor illegally, a claim the Russia’s top diplomat said would be investigated.
Armenia has officially denied Baku’s claim of transporting landmines or any other military hardware to Artsakh.