MOSCOW, June 17. /TASS/. Moscow believes it will be wrong to mix the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement-related issues with the relations the region's countries have with other states, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said when asked about Azerbaijan's latest summit level contacts with Turkey.
"We believe it would be wrong to mix the issues concerning Nagorno-Karabakh with the bilateral relations of Azerbaijan and Armenia with third countries," Zakharova said. "We view the latest Azerbaijani-Turkish summit level contacts precisely from this angle."
At the same time Zakharova stressed that bilateral relations in the region, including those in the military field, should not be targeted against third countries. "We by all means support the steps that are geared to normalizing the dialogue between Baku and Yerevan, between Yerevan and Ankara, and cooperation in the Southern Caucasus on the basis of principles of neighborliness and respect for and balance of interests of all countries in the region," Zakharova said.
About the signing of the Shusha declaration Zakharova said that multilateral efforts were being exerted in the region to persuade the parties to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict to reach agreements and move along the peace track.
"All statements that are being made in this connection should work for the sole goal of stabilization, peace development and restoration of economic ties and, of course, meet the interests of the region's population," Zakharova concluded.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on June 15-16 paid an official visit to Azerbaijan. He held talks with President Ilham Aliyev and visited a number of facilities in Shusha, taken over by Baku following last autumn's hostilities. The two leaders signed the Shusha declaration on relations of alliance. In part, they agreed on regular joint meetings of the two countries' security councils and pledged to coordinate the activities of their armed forces and help each other in case of a threat to security and sovereignty.