Armenia’s Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan urged an end to Azerbaijan’s military rhetoric and warmongering, saying the destructive statements undermine peace and the resolution of the Karabakh conflict.
According to Armenia’s foreign ministry, Mnatsakanyan made the statement during a video conference with his Azerbaijani counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov on Tuesday in the presence of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-chairmen Igor Popov of Russia, Stéphane Visconti of France, Andrew Schoffer of the U.S. and Andrzej Kasprzyk, the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office (PRCIO).
During the meeting, Mnatsakanyan stressed that it was unacceptable for Azerbaijan to continue its official warmongering and deconstructive statements, stressing that they undermine the environment of the peace process and hinder the implementation of the commitment to prepare the peoples for peace.
At the same time, Mnatsakanyan underscored the need to consistently ensure the comprehensive security of the people of Artsakh, including through free and safe movement.
Armenia’s foreign ministry said that during the meeting, the possibilities of face to face meetings and the Co-Chairs’ visit to the region were discussed, depending on the development of the situation with the pandemic. At the same time, the parties emphasized their readiness to continue remote contacts next month.
In a statement issued by the the Co-Chairs after the meeting they emphasized the importance of promoting and maintaining an atmosphere conducive to peace and favorable to substantive negotiations. They assessed positively the relative stability on the ground and expressed satisfaction that the sides continue to use existing direct communication links to avoid escalation.
“Recalling their statement of March 9, 2019, however, the Co‑Chairs noted with concern that recent provocative statements, inflammatory rhetoric, and possible steps intended to change the situation on the ground in tangible ways could undermine the settlement process,” said the OSCE statement.
The Co‑Chairs stressed that there is no military solution to the conflict. They urged the sides to take additional steps to strengthen the ceasefire and to prepare the populations for peace. The Co-Chairs also stressed the urgency of resuming monitoring exercises under the leadership of the PRCIO as soon as conditions allow.
The Co‑Chairs and Foreign Ministers agreed to hold another joint video conference in July and to meet in person as soon as possible.