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Russian, Armenian foreign ministers discuss Nagorno-Karabakh settlement

August 31, 2016, 18:22 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The sides discussed bilateral foreign policy interaction

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© Davit Abrahamyan, PAN Photo via AP

MOSCOW, August 31. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Wednesday discussed with his Armenian counterpart Edward Nalbandian by phone the situation in the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

"On August 31, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held a phone conversation with Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian, during which they discussed certain issues of bilateral foreign policy interaction, as well as the situation in the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement," the statement said.

Lavrov also congratulated Nalbandian on being decorated with Russia’s Order of Friendship.

Talks on Nagorno-Karabakh have been held on the basis of the so-called Madrid Principles suggested by co-chairs of the Minsk Group of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) - Russia, France and the United States - in December 2007 in the Spanish capital.

They include three key principles written in the Helsinki Final Act: refraining from the threat or use of force, territorial integrity and the right to self-determination.

Nagorno-Karabakh sought independence from Azerbaijan at the end of the 1980s, which resulted in a war between Azerbaijan and Armenia that claimed the lives of 25,000-30,000 people between 1988 and 1994. Since then, the territory has been controlled by Armenia.

The OSCE Minsk Group acts as a mediator. It is a mechanism designed to promote a peace solution to the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh.

The group is led by co-chairs France, Russia and the United States. It also comprises Belarus, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Finland, and Turkey, as well as Armenia and Azerbaijan.

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