WASHINGTON, October 5. /TASS/. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken held a phone conversation with the foreign ministers of Azerbaijan and Armenia, Jeyhun Bayramov and Ararat Mirzoyan on Tuesday, to discuss steps to settle differences between Baku and Yerevan, the US Department of State said.
During the conversation, held in the trilateral format, Blinken "expressed our appreciation for the positive steps Armenia and Azerbaijan are taking towards reaching a sustainable peace agreement," Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price said in a statement.
Blinken also "welcomed the meeting between the ministers on October 2 as an important step forward in the peace process," he said.
"The Secretary commended the release of POWs and reiterated our commitment to helping Armenia and Azerbaijan resolve issues peacefully and underscored that diplomacy is the only way forward," the statement reads.
During the pre-dawn hours of September 13, the Armenian Defense Ministry said that Azerbaijani forces had opened fire on some of the country’s settlements. Baku said it was responding to provocations by Yerevan. Azerbaijan later said a ceasefire agreement was reached but Armenia said that the shelling had continued. The Armenian Security Council convened an emergency meeting where a decision was made to ask Russia to use the provisions of the Agreement on Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance and also to appeal to the Collective Security Treaty Organization and the UN Security Council.