Joint statement issued following meeting between Nikol Pashinyan, Vladimir Putin and Ilham Aliyev
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A joint statement was issued following the trilateral meeting held between RA Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, RF President Vladimir Putin and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev in Moscow. Below is the text of the joint statement.
“We, the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan and the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin declare the following:
1. With a view to implementing Paragraph 9 of the November 9, 2020 Statement in terms of unblocking all economic and transport links in the region, we are hereby endorsing the proposal made by RF President Vladimir Putin on setting up a tripartite working group under the joint chairmanship of the Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia and the Deputy Chairman of the RF Government.
2. The Working Group will hold its first meeting by January 30, 2021, according to the results of which it will draw up a list of primary tasks arising from the implementation of the aforementioned Paragraph 9 of the Statement. The priorities shall include rail and road communications, as well as the identification of other directions as agreed upon by the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Republic of Armenia and the Russian Federation, hereinafter referred to as the Parties.
3. In order to implement the primary directions, the Working Group’s co-chairs will approve the composition of expert subgroups in these areas from among the officials of the competent authorities and organizations of the Parties. Within a month after the Working Group’s meeting, the expert subgroups will submit a list of projects, which should specify the necessary resources and activities for their implementation and approval at the highest level by the Parties.
4. By March 1, 2021, the Working Group shall submit for the Parties’ approval at the highest level a list and timetable of activities to restore or build new transport infrastructure necessary for initiating, implementing and providing for the safety of international traffic through the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Armenia, as well as ensuring the safety of transportations carried out by the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Armenia through the territories of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Armenia.”
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan today attended a trilateral meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev in Moscow. The parties discussed the implementation of the provisions specified in the joint statement signed by the leaders of the three countries on November 9, 2020.
Nikol Pashinyan first thanked the Russian side and personally Vladimir Putin for their consistency in establishing a ceasefire, deploying peacekeeping troops in the region, promoting the settlement of the conflict, restoring peace in Nagorno-Karabakh and providing conditions conducive to normal life for Artsakh-based Armenians.
The Premier stressed that the repatriation of POWs and the search for missing persons are of paramount importance to the Armenian side. In his words, the full implementation of the agreements reached on the above issues will create prerequisites for promoting economic exchanges and developing transport communications.
Nikol Pashinyan emphasized that the November 9 statement came in the aftermath of the war, and its provisions are only part of those fundamental principles developed under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs.
The Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia emphasized that some of the basic provisions and principles, which have not been implemented yet, cannot be ignored. According to Nikol Pashinyan, only political-diplomatic efforts based on the “principles” of international law, in particular, respect for and protection of the right of nations to self-determination, can pave the way for addressing the causes and consequences of the war.
“Only they can bring lasting peace and harmony to the region, based on the goals set out in the UN Charter. Armenia is prepared to follow up the process of peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs, based on such fundamental principles and elements as were not reflected in the November 9 statement,” Nikol Pashinyan said, highlighting the Artsakh people’s right to self-determination, the de-occupation of those territories occupied by Azerbaijan in Artsakh, the provision of conditions necessary for the safe return of Artsakh-domiciled Armenians to their homes, as well as the preservation of religious and cultural assets.
The Prime Minister of Armenia condemned the breach of the provisions of the November 9 statement, the provocative actions carried out on the frontline, stressing the need to withdraw terrorist groups from the territories occupied by Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh and its adjacent areas.
The leaders of the three countries made statements for the press. Prime Minister Pashinyan stated in his remarks:
First, let me thank you for all the efforts you are making to restore stability and security in our region and to settle the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Unfortunately, this conflict has not been settled even up to this day. Of course, we have ensured a ceasefire, but many issues are still outstanding and must be resolved. One is the status of Nagorno-Karabakh, and we, Armenia, are certainly ready to continue the talks as the co-chairs in the OSCE Minsk Group, in part, on this issue.
Unfortunately, today we have not settled the issue of prisoners of war, and this is the most sensitive and serious issue because it is a humanitarian issue and we agreed to continue working in this area. But we believe that unfortunately item 8 of our joint Statement, for instance, is not being fully carried out, and I hope we will be able to reach a specific decision on this as soon as possible.
I can say that the Statement we signed today is very important indeed. I will say that the implementation of the agreements in this Statement could change the economic profile of our region and that the economic changes could produce even more reliable security guarantees. We will certainly work constructively to this end, but, as I said, unfortunately, it is impossible to resolve all the problems at one meeting.
I hope we will continue moving forward. I would like to emphasise again that for us the main issues today are humanitarian, notably, the exchange of prisoners of war as envisaged in item 8 of our November 9–10 joint Statement.”
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan met with RF President Vladimir Putin on the margins of his working visit to the Russian Federation.
Greeting the Prime Minister of Armenia, Vladimir Putin said:
“Mr Prime Minister,
I would like to welcome you again – this time to our bilateral meeting. I would like to thank you for agreeing to come to Moscow today.
I believe that indeed, despite the problems you mentioned, which remain outstanding, I hope we will still be able to come to terms on the remaining problems including the humanitarian issues. I think that in general this meeting has been useful for determining the future of the region and the development of relations in the region, primarily between Armenia and Azerbaijan.
I will say that we have certainly had and will have allied relations in all respects and we are close partners in many international organisations.
However, today we spoke at length about the economy. I would like to mention in this context that despite the complicated year and despite all the difficulties, we still increased our trade by almost 4 percent, 3.9 percent in January-October, 2020.
All this makes it possible to hope that as the settlement of the situation around Nagorno-Karabakh moves forward, we will make decisions that will definitely benefit the Armenian people, the Armenian state and our bilateral ties.”
Prime Minister Pashinyan said in his remarks:
“Thank you, Mr President.
Today, for over four hours, we talked in a trilateral format, and I am happy that after these talks, we have at least some results, and these results are important. I am confident that the implementation of the agreements formulated in our joint Statement can seriously change the economic potential of our region and substantially enhance its investment appeal.
However, as I also said, I think these economic issues are being complicated by the lack of progress on humanitarian matters. And, of course, as I said, the most sensitive issues for us and I think for all of us, are humanitarian matters linked with the prisoners of war, missing people, and the exchange of bodies. I would like to thank you for upholding and supporting this position.
Of course, your personal contribution to the peace process has always been very tangible and is particularly special now, after the relevant events. I hope relations between Armenia and Russia will become deeper against the backdrop of these events. Russia has been and remains our main strategic ally in the security sphere. Of course, we still need to discuss not only the future of our region but also the agenda of our bilateral ties.”
Issues related to the outcome of the trilateral meeting of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia, the Presidents of Russia and Azerbaijan and the full implementation of the provisions of the November 9 statement were discussed during the meeting. In particular, the parties focused on issues related to the effective implementation of the Russian peacekeeping mission in Nagorno-Karabakh, cooperation in the field of ceasefire control, and the possibility of unblocking transport infrastructure in the region.
Prime Minister Pashinyan thanked the Russian side for establishing an interdepartmental humanitarian center in Nagorno-Karabakh, the primary goal of which is to restore normal life in the region. At the same time, the Prime Minister of Armenia welcomed Russia’s efforts aimed at involving international organizations in humanitarian activities in Artsakh.
Nikol Pashinyan and Vladimir Putin also discussed issues related to Armenian-Russian interstate relations, including economic cooperation.