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Armenian acting PM says asked Putin to help over situation on border with Azerbaijan

According to Nikol Pashinyan, talks with the Azerbaijani side will be continued on Saturday
Nikiol Pashinyan Alexander Riumin/TASS
Nikiol Pashinyan
© Alexander Riumin/TASS

YEREVAN, May 14. /TASS/. Armenia’s acting Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said on Friday he had turned to Russian President Vladimir Putin for help, including military assistance, over the situation on the border with Azerbaijan.

"Due to the fact that the Azerbaijani armed forces have not left Armenia’s territory, as was agreed, I asked President Putin today to help Armenia, including to provide military assistance," he said during an extraordinary parliamentary session.

According to Pashinyan, talks with the Azerbaijani side will be continued on Saturday.

Armenia’s defense ministry said on Wednesday the Azerbaijani armed forced had tried to carry out "certain works" in a border area in the Syunik Province in a bid to "adjust the border." Following retaliatory measures, the Azerbaijani side stopped its activities and agreed to hold talks to settle the situation. Later in that day, Pashinyan called a meeting of the country’s Security Council where he described the situation as infringement on Armenia’s territory. He said Azerbaijani troops had crossed Armenia’s state border and moved 3.5 kilometers deep into its territory.

After the end of hostilities in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone last autumn, seven districts adjacent to Nagorno-Karabakh came over to Baku’s control and the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan was moved closer to the Syunik Province. Territorial disputes between the sided arise now and then.

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.

Renewed clashes between Azerbaijan and Armenia erupted on September 27, 2020, with intense battles raging in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh.

On November 9, 2020, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan signed a joint statement on a complete ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh starting from November 10. Under the document, the Azerbaijani and Armenian sides stopped at the positions that they had held and Russian peacekeepers were deployed along the engagement line in Nagorno-Karabakh and along the Lachinsky corridor that connects Armenia with the enclave. Apart from that, several districts came over to Baku’s control.