Tension persists on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border and on the Artsakh contact line, Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan told news outlet "Azatutyun."
"Basically, we have always said that in case of such unpredictable behavior from Azerbaijan, tension should always be expected, both in Nagorno-Karabakh and on the borders of the Republic of Armenia," Mirzoyan emphasized, continuing. "We have seen several invasions into the territory of the Republic of Armenia [...] and the occupation of the territories of Armenia, and also constant threats, hate speech, also towards Nagorno Karabakh, brought the population of Nagorno Karabakh to the brink of a humanitarian disaster, and yes, we always expect tension.
Now you are wondering what we are doing. We are actively working with international partners, I'm sure you are keeping track of everything, you see statements, calls and, of course, legal decisions of the International Court. We must continue to work like this until Azerbaijan enters the constructive field, because we want peace, and we want long-term peace. We want recognition of territorial integrity, but at the same time a mutual recognition, since you know that Azerbaijan must recognize our borders, there is such an agreement, but so far the President of Azerbaijan refuses to make public statements on this matter [...],” Mirzoyan said.
When asked whether the main, fundamental differences remain after Yerevan and Baku again exchanged options for a peace treaty, he replied: “Differences remain. Of course, it would be wrong to say that there is no progress from edition to edition, the text is being polished, I once said that all points are important, but nevertheless, the text can be conditionally divided into vitally important and not so vitally important points. But, of course, there are still fundamental disagreements on the most vital, most significant issues. We must continue to negotiate, continue to work.”
Regarding the introduction of an international mechanism into the Baku-Stepanakert dialogue, the head of the RA Foreign Ministry said, “We are confident that all issues related to Nagorno-Karabakh should be discussed between representatives of Nagorno-Karabakh and official Baku, and everyone else in the world can only play the role of facilitators. Why an international mechanism? We think that even if this dialogue begins between official Baku and Stepanakert, still, left alone in the same room, Baku will try to conduct this conversation in the form of an ultimatum, dictate demands and conditions. I don't think there will be a big, real and sincere dialogue if there is no international presence, and even I may doubt the continuity of these meetings and dialogue. And this is where some kind of international mechanism is needed.”
When asked whether this international mechanism is a “red line” for Yerevan, the FM replied, “Principles are a red line. We want real solutions to be given to real problems, and we are confident that a dialogue is the best way to do this. Why under international auspices? To make dialogue more effective, that's all. The red lines are the final results.”
Regarding the map, according to Ararat Mirzoyan, “a dialogue is taking place that did not exist before, in an atmosphere of greater mutual understanding.” “We see positive signals, at the same time I want to say again that not only are the exchange of ideas and specific agreements not being implemented, but the leadership of Azerbaijan is either changing its mind or is currently playing some kind of a diplomatic game,” he concluded.