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February 04
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Western countries after the destruction of the OSCE Minsk Group are trying to interfere in Russia's mediation efforts to improve relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan, but it is not productive, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a press conference.

According to Lavrov, after the 44-day war in Karabakh in September-October 2020, Russia has continued and continues now to help the Armenian and Azerbaijani sides and to unblock transport and economic corridors in the region, which will give impetus to development not only for Armenia and Azerbaijan, but also other neighboring countries - Turkey, Iran, Georgia and Russia.

"Russia will assist the two sides in delimiting the Armenian-Azerbaijani border. We have agreed that Russia will assist in negotiating a peace treaty between Armenia and Azerbaijan. All this was the result of summits between the presidents of Russia, Azerbaijan and the prime minister of Armenia. At the same time we saw the frantic attempts of other players to get involved in those processes. We did not have any problems with that. The only thing we noted in our contacts with Yerevan and Baku was that the West, after the start of the special military operation, officially stated through Washington and Paris that they would not cooperate with Russia anywhere, in any formats. Thus, they declared the end of the OSCE Minsk Group. When our Armenian colleagues sometimes mention the Minsk Group, we tell them that it is not a question for us, it is a question for the U.S. and France, which announced that they would not assemble this group, and of course, it is a question for Azerbaijan, because without Azerbaijan's participation any mediation efforts are pointless," Lavrov said.

Lavrov also noted that "now both the French and the Americans and the European Union are trying to compensate for the Minsk Group they buried with their wedging into mediation services, trying to pick up and privatize those agreements that were reached by the parties with Russian participation."

"For example, they are holding a delimitation commission meeting in Brussels. Well, both Armenians and Azerbaijanis are polite people, they go there. But how can we discuss delimitation without having maps of the former Soviet republics, which exist only in the Russian General Staff, I can hardly imagine," the minister added.

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