Statements and messages of the Prime Minister of RA

PM refers to Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement process


After the visit to the National Agrarian University of Armenia, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan answered journalists’ questions that bore on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

Question: The Foreign Ministers are meeting today. Recently you said that the negotiations had been given a fresh start. What are your expectations from today’s meeting in this respect?

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan: We expect that those instructions the President of Azerbaijan and I gave to the Foreign Ministers will be fulfilled. I mean that the sides should try to bring ever closer their respective positions regarding the agenda discussed in Vienna.

Question: The Russian Foreign Minister is also attending the meeting. What is the reason for this?

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan: There is nothing strange in this, since Russia is one of the co-chairing countries in the OSCE Minsk Group, and I think that this long standing practice will be continued. Meetings can be held under the auspices of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia, France, or the United States, so I do not see anything extraordinary and strange here.

Question: In your speech in Strasbourg you presented the position of the Armenian side on the settlement of the Karabakh conflict. Baku was quick to react again evoking the so-called “occupied territories and the withdrawal of the Armenian armed forces.” How does the Armenian side see the prospects of the talks under such conditions?

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan: In my remarks delivered at the congress of the Yerkrapah Volunteers Union, I said a biggest problem is that the statements made before and after meetings sometimes do not correspond to the spirit of the conversation itself, and this is a serious problem.

In Vienna, and before that, and now, and in the future as well, my appeal is as follows: let us not talk too much about negotiations, instead let us say something that could make people realize that they are dealing with serious people. It is rather strange when the leaders of two states talk in a room for two hours, and then society cannot understand what they discussed and how? This is the biggest problem of the negotiation process, because there is an old inertia, I am out of this inertia, and therefore I have no problem getting out of this inertia. But there is an old inertia, when, after each such statement, one tries to prove that he has won, and so on. This is the wrong logic.

Question: Many analysts claim that while the Armenian side keeps advocating peace...

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan: Sorry, we do not advocate anything continuously - words are very important here - we do not advocate peace persistently; we will do so within very specific limits. These are different things.

Question: In this case, in case of contradictions, what stance will the Armenian side take if the other side abides by its aggressive rhetoric?

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan: We are continuing the negotiations, and I will be back again to the logic of the previous question. The sides need to be on the same wavelength. We are trying, and sometimes we may even change our “wavelength,” if necessary, in order to tune our partners to the same wave, because the general spirit of the talks held in Vienna, Davos, St. Petersburg and Dushanbe is that we should work together to resolve this problem, work on a peaceful resolution of the conflict.

I hope that we are all sincere in our aspirations, because if one tries to cheat the other at the table of negotiations, nothing will work out, and we will go the wrong way. It is extremely important to note that we are not persistently propagating anything at all; we are simply making proposals for building a platform for solving the problem. There is a way leading to war and there is the path of peace.

We state that we are not frightened by the prospect of a war; we are not scared at all. We must make up our mind ultimately as to whether we want to handle the problem on a peaceful platform or not. However, I think that every reasonable person should try to resolve the conflict on a peaceful note. Otherwise, what is point in the negotiation process?

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