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May 21
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During the meeting in Brussels with the president of Azerbaijan [Ilham Aliyev], we reaffirmed our decision and agreement on the construction of the Yeraskh-Julfa-Ordubad-Meghri-Horadis railway. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan stated this at Thursday’s Cabinet meeting of the government of Armenia.

"This agreement was reached as a result of the Armenia-Russia-Azerbaijan trilateral working group discussions—chaired by the deputy prime ministers of the three countries—dealing with the opening of regional communications. This agreement was recorded during the [Russian President Vladimir] Putin-mediated meeting held in Sochi [(Russia)] on November 26. And all this was recorded also at the meeting in Brussels that was held mediated by President Charles Michel of the European Council," he said.

As per Pashinyan, the aforesaid railway will operate in accordance with internationally accepted border and customs rules, on the principle of reciprocity, and under the sovereignty and jurisdiction of the countries it will run along.

"Armenia will get access to Iran and Russia through this railway, and Azerbaijan will get a railway link to [its exclave] Nakhichevan," Pashinyan said.

According to him, if it is managed to start a certain dialogue and succeed in opening the border and communications with Turkey, this railway project can reach a much larger scale.

"That is, the railway we are talking about exists from [Armenia’s] Yeraskh [village] to Gyumri [city], and there is also a railway from Gyumri to [Turkey’s] Kars [city]. But I say all this so that we have to start the construction. Of course, there is a lot of work to be done before the construction itself, part of the work has already been done, but now we have to resolve this problem with practical and daily work," said the Armenian PM.

He noted that a consultation with a narrow format also will be held on this matter.

"Our wish is to have the [aforementioned] railway as soon as possible. I do not want to overestimate the significance of this agreement and project, but, on the other hand, I do not want to underestimate [it] either. This is an important agreement, which I hope we will implement correctly, and which will considerably change the economic, investment, of course, the political and security environment of the region," said the premier of Armenia.

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