YEREVAN, October 7. /TASS/. Armenia will support any initiative that might bring about a ceasefire, including a visit to the capital of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic by legislators from the countries that co-chair the Minsk Group, Armenia’s President Armen Sarkisyan said in reply to a TASS question.
"We welcome any idea that will bring about a ceasefire, including a visit to Stepanakert by parliament members from the countries that co-chair the Minsk Group. But the initiative must be proposed by the co-chairs," Sarkisyan said.
He stressed that the co-chair countries had major influence on the negotiating process, adding that Russia was number one on the list, because it maintained good relations with the parties to the conflict.
Renewed clashes between Azerbaijan and Armenia erupted on September 27, with intense battles raging in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh. The area experienced flare-ups of violence in the summer of 2014, in April 2016 and this past July. Azerbaijan and Armenia have imposed martial law and launched mobilization efforts. Both parties to the conflict have reported casualties, among them civilians.
The conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the highland region of Nagorno-Karabakh, a disputed territory that had been part of Azerbaijan before the Soviet Union break-up, but primarily populated by ethnic Armenians, broke out in February 1988 after the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region announced its withdrawal from the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic. In 1992-1994, tensions boiled over and exploded into large-scale military action for control over the enclave and seven adjacent territories after Azerbaijan lost control of them. Talks on the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement have been ongoing since 1992 under the OSCE Minsk Group, led by its three co-chairs - Russia, France and the United States.