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Georgia concerned with escalation of situation around Nagorno-Karabakh -— PM

April 04, 2016, 12:26 UTC+3 TBILISI

Georgy Kvirikashvili expressed hope that tensions will subside with help from the international community

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TBILISI, April 4. /TASS/. Georgia is concerned with escalation in Nagorno-Karabakh, Georgian Prime Minister Georgy Kvirikashvili said on Monday.

"I express concern over escalation of the situation near Georgia. We hope that tensions will subside with help from the international community. This is very important for peace and stability in the region and not only in the region," Kvirikashvili told NATO People’s Diplomacy Forum.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Energy Kakha Kaladze told reporters that Tbilisi will support de-escalation in relations between Baku and Yerevan. "As a neighbor country to Armenia and Azerbaijan, Georgia will maximally support the process of de-escalation of the situation," Kaladze said.

On Saturday, April 2, the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh rapidly deteriorated when the parties to the Karabakh conflict accused each other of violating truce along the front line. The claims came from defense authorities of Armenia and of Azerbaijan.

Neighboring Armenia and Azerbaijan fell out with each other in the late 1980s because of Nagorno-Karabakh, the disputed territory that had been part of Azerbaijan before the Soviet Union break-up but was mainly populated by Armenians.

In 1991-1994, the confrontation spilled over into large-scale military action for control over the enclave and some adjacent territories. Thousands left their homes on both sides in a conflict that killed 30,000. A truce was called between Armenia and the Nagorno-Karabakh republic on one side and Azerbaijan on the other in May 1994.

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.

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