Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian stressed before the Parliament on Wednesday that he hopes that the peace treaty with Azerbaijan will be signed before the end of the year and, in this regard, he will do everything possible, together with his government, to make it happen.
«I have to say it honestly: I want and would like it (the agreement) to be signed by the end of the year. How realistic is this? I will answer as follows: I and the government will make every effort to make it (so),» he said, as reported by the Armenpress news agency.
Pashinian also confirmed his attendance at a tripartite meeting in the Russian city of Sochi on October 31, possibly attended by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
«There are many accumulated issues that need to be discussed, starting with the issue of stability and security in Nagorno Karabakh. This year, the Azerbaijani Armed Forces invaded the protection zone of the Russian peacekeepers, and we do not hide that the lack of response of the peacekeepers is incomprehensible,» the Armenian prime minister noted.
In this regard, he stressed that despite the agreements reached in the trilateral working group, Moscow is making statements at various levels on the necessity of opening a transport corridor through Armenia, while the Russian side has not condemned the aggression of September 13.
Among other requests, Azerbaijan has asked, as part of the latest draft of the peace treaty text, for the establishment of a corridor through Armenian territory known as the Zangezur Corridor, as well as the opening of an investigation to determine the fate of Azeri soldiers who disappeared in the framework of the conflict.
On Russia’s role in the negotiation process, U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price explained on Tuesday that it is up to both sides to assess whether Putin «is helpful to them in the search for that lasting peace.»
«Russia’s 2008 invasion of Georgia and its ongoing brutal invasion of Ukraine suggest that Moscow has little respect for its neighbor’s sovereignty and is hardly a reliable long-term partner,» stressed Price, who was responding to comments by Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova.
The Russian side claimed earlier this week that the West is trying to replicate «its confrontational schemes» in Ukraine to the Caucasus area, calling this approach «insolent», since, according to Moscow, what Washington and Brussels are seeking is Russia’s expulsion from Transcaucasia.
«There is nothing self-promoting about trying to end years of conflict and years of flare-ups that have led to violence and ultimately deaths, both on the part of Armenians and Azerbaijani citizens. Our only goal here is to help these countries work together to achieve a comprehensive and lasting peace and ultimately save lives,» Price concluded.
The governments of Armenia and Azerbaijan agreed in September to a cease-fire following recent clashes on the border, which left more than 200 people dead. The fighting is the most serious since 2020, when they clashed over control of Nagorno-Karabakh, a territory with a majority Armenian population that has been the focus of conflict since it decided to secede in 1988 from the Soviet-integrated region of Azerbaijan.