June 18
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Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Helga Maria Schmid has responded to President of Armenia Armen Sarkissian’s letter regarding the speedy return of all Armenian prisoners of war and civilian detainees in Azerbaijan.

As reported the Staff of the President of Armenia, the OSCE Secretary General stated that she has focused on the issues stated in the letter and presented them to the relevant structures of the OSCE.

“I continue to follow the situation, I am in touch with the Minsk Group Co-Chairs and the Personal Representative of the Chairperson-in-Office on these and related issues. I am aware that you also discussed these issues with incumbent President Anne Linde during her visit to Yerevan in March.

The Minsk Group Co-Chairs issued a statement on 13 April 2021 addressing the issues raised in your letter. The Co-Chairs stressed the need for additional efforts to address existing concerns and to build an atmosphere of mutual trust that promotes lasting peace.

In this context, the Co-Chairs noted the need for the return of all prisoners of war and other detainees in accordance with the provisions of international humanitarian law. They, like me and other OSCE officials, will continue to be vocal about this issue. The OSCE institutions and structures are already working closely with Armenia through planned work in all three OSCE dimensions,” the OSCE Secretary General said.

“I hope to develop and further expand this cooperation during my tenure as OSCE Secretary General,” said Helga Maria Schmid.

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