World, Europe

Russia hosts new round of talks on Upper Karabakh

Russia's top diplomat discusses cease-fire in Nagorno-Karabakh separately with Armenian, Azerbaijani counterparts in Moscow

Elena Teslova   | 21.10.2020
Russia hosts new round of talks on Upper Karabakh

MOSCOW

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held two separate meetings with his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts in Moscow on Wednesday to discuss the implementation of a cease-fire in the Upper Karabakh region.

"During the talks, urgent issues related to the implementation of previously reached agreements on a cease-fire in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone and the creation of conditions for its sustainable settlement were discussed," the ministry said in a statement, following Lavrov's meeting with Zohrab Mnatsakanyan and Jeyhun Bayramov.

Over the past 10 days, Armenia has violated two humanitarian cease-fires in Upper Karabakh, or Nagorno-Karabakh, an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan.

A new humanitarian cease-fire was agreed on Saturday, taking effect at midnight.

Relations between the two former Soviet republics have been tense since 1991, when the Armenian military occupied Upper Karabakh.

Four UN Security Council resolutions and two from the UN General Assembly, as well as international organizations, demand the "immediate, complete and unconditional withdrawal of the occupying forces" from the Azerbaijani territory.

In total, about 20% of Azerbaijan's territory – including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions – has been under illegal occupation for nearly three decades.

The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group – co-chaired by France, Russia, and the US – was formed in 1992 to find a peaceful solution to the conflict, but to no avail. A cease-fire, however, was agreed to in 1994.

World powers, including Russia, France, and the US, have called for a new cease-fire. Turkey, meanwhile, has supported Baku's right to self-defense and demanded the withdrawal of Armenia's occupying forces.

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