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June 20
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, at the meeting with the residents of Voskepar village in Tavush Province, indirectly confirmed the fears that Armenia will be handing over the four former Azerbaijani-inhabited villages without getting anything in return.

"The [border] demarcation and delimitation process is as follows that our commissions shall go and decide on the spot where the Republic of Armenia begins, and that shall become the state border between Armenia and the Azerbaijani state. Why are we discussing this matter and why have we come to discuss this with the people of Voskepar? Because there are some issues that we will discuss. We see that the real possibility of starting the demarcation and demarcation process can be realized in this section: in the section from Baghanis to Berkaber [villages].

We know that Azerbaijan speaks about four non-enclave villages, you know that we speak about 31 villages. We raise that issue, they raise that issue, and whenever we want to move forward in these discussions, even if we rely on the logic that we have 31 settlements in a problematic situation, they—less than that, Azerbaijan uses such an argument that the actual territory of none of the settlements of the Republic of Armenia is under the control of Azerbaijan; that is, the residential area of a village is not under the control of Azerbaijan.

They say: ‘let's free the actual territories of the settlements, then discuss, talk about the territories of vital importance in the villages.’ Of course, we counter, we say: ‘a village is not only the village administration, a village is also its vital territories.’ During all discussions we bring these arguments, and these arguments are fair, and our policy is that we must not allow war, we must not let the start of war. And this is the reason why we have decided that we should proceed with the adjustment of the border of Armenia in these sections. And we do this not only for the sake of the Republic of Armenia, but specifically for Voskepar, Kirants villages, in order to ensure the security of those villages," said the PM of Armenia.

By this, Pashinyan indirectly said that in exchange for handing over these territories to Azerbaijan, the latter will not return to Armenia, for example, Berkaber village’s hundreds of hectares of land, which came under Azerbaijan's control in the 1990s.

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