GENEVA, October 16. /TASS/. Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan called upon the United States and France to support Russia’s efforts to stabilize the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh.
In an interview with Switzerland’s RTS TV late on Thursday, Pashinyan said: "We maintain consultations with our Russian partners all the time, including within the framework of the Collective Security Treaty. There have already been clear statements that if the situation gets worse, Russia and the Collective Security Treaty Organization will fulfill their obligations to Armenia."
"But I think that Russia is destined to play a more important role, such as restoring stability and peace in the Nagorno-Karabakh region, as a co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group. I stress that Russia is the closest co-chair to our region, so the two other co-chairs, France and the United States - should support Russia in its efforts in order to stabilize the region," the premier continued.
He described the humanitarian situation in Nagorno-Karabakh as "more than serious." In his words, the ceasefire in the region "has not even begun yet," because "at the very moment it was intended to come into force, Azerbaijan launched new attacks."
"As far as a compromise is concerned, Armenia is always ready," he said. "But both sides should make concessions.
In his opnion, "Azerbaijan was never ready for a compromise" and is "even less inclined to do so now", because "Turkey streamlines the entire process."
Pashinyan described the current events in Nagorno-Karabakh as "consequences of Turkey’s expansionist and imperialistic policies," describing his country as "the last barrier to Turkey’s expansion to the east and southeast."
At the talks held at Russia’s initiative in Moscow, Baku and Yerevan agreed a ceasefire, which came into effect at 12:00 local time on October 10 for humanitarian reasons in order to exchange detainees and the bodies of those killed in the fighting. However, both sides traded blame for violating the ceasefire agreement.
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.