‘All parties to benefit if Nagorno-Karabakh ceasefire honoured’

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said that if all parties in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict honour the ceasefire agreement, everyone will benefit from it.

“I am sure that if we carry out everything that we agreed upon, and I currently see no signs that someone is trying to break these agreements, everyone will benefit,” Xinhua news agency quoted Lavrov as saying in a statement on Thursday.

He added that unblocking all economic, communication and transport links in the disputed region will be vital for its revival and the recovery of Armenia’s economy that has suffered the most.

The Minister stressed that the peacekeeping mission deployed in the region will help restore the cultural heritage of both Armenia and Azerbaijan.

He ensured that the Russian mission will help contain the situation in the region and find constructive solutions.

Lavrov further reiterated that no Turkish peacekeeping missions will operate in the region.

Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a joint statement on Tuesday, agreeing on a complete ceasefire in the conflict-ridden Nagorno-Karabakh region.

As agreed, Russia will deploy a peacekeeping contingent consisting of 1,960 servicemen with small arms, 90 armoured personnel carriers, and 380 vehicles to the region.

This is the fourth ceasefire since last month.

The three others — two brokered by Russia (October 10, 17) and one by the US (October 26) — collapsed after Armenia and Azerbaijan traded accusations and attacks.

A new round of armed conflict broke out on September 27 along the contact line of the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, which is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan but mostly governed by the Republic of Artsakh, a de facto independent state with an Armenian ethnic majority.

The area experienced flare-ups of violence in the summer of 2014, April 2016 and in July this year.

Armenia and Azerbaijan went to war over the region in 1988-94, eventually declaring a ceasefire.

However, a settlement was never reached.