Wider international presence in Artsakh and Lachin Corridor becoming more and more urgent – PM Pashinyan

A wider international presence in Nagorno-Karabakh and the Lachin Corridor is becoming more and more urgent, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said at the government sitting today.

“Azerbaijan continues to escalate the situation in the region, this time by illegally setting up a checkpoint in the Lachin corridor linking Armenia to Nagorno Karabakh. If until now the Lachin corridor had been closed under the fake pretext of “eco-activists,” now it has been officially closed by Azerbaijan,” the Prime Minister said.

He noted that the provocative step aims at not only escalating the situation in the region, but also deepening the humanitarian crisis in Artsakh.

“This time the international community has given a clear assessment to the establishment of the Azerbaijani checkpoint in the Lachin corridor,” he noted.

The Prime Minister said “the deeper goal of this and previous actions is to subject the population of Nagorno Karabakh to ethnic cleansing and genocide, and this should be in the focus of all of us, the international community.”

PM Pashinyan emphasized that the establishment of the checkpoint goes counter to Point 6 of the November 9, 2020 trilateral statement, adding that Azerbaijan has actually violated all of its provisions.

Presenting Armenia’s vision of the settlement of the situation, PM Pashinyan said: “The peacekeeping contingent of the Russian Federation should exercise control of the Lachin corridor and therefore ensure its normal functioning, i.e. no one should exercise control in the Lachin corridor except the peacekeepers, and Azerbaijan should not impede the free movement along the road. This is what the November 9 statement envisages.”

“The security and rights of the people of Nagorno Karabakh should become a subject of negotiations between Stepanakert and Baku within an international format,” he noted.

As for a possible peace treaty between Armenia and Azerbaijan, the Prime Minister said “obviously, it should have a a clear and functioning system of implementation guarantees and dispute settlement. The parameters of border delimitation should be outlined, and clear mechanisms should be implemented to exclude any escalation.”

He said concrete efforts on the part of Armenia and the international community are needed to prevent further escalation of the situation and reach a comprehensive settlement, and stressed that the Republic of Armenia will continue to take efforts in that direction.

“Along with these efforts, a wider international presence in Nagorno-Karabakh and the Lachin Corridor is becoming more and more necessary with each passing day,” he said.

The Prime Minister noted that as a first step it’s necessary to dispatch an international fact-finding mission to the Lachin corridor and Nagorno Karabakh.

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