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July 25
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Ruben Vardanyan renounced Russian citizenship—and did so, openly. Maria Zakharova, the spokesperson of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), stated this during Wednesday’s weekly press briefing—and answering the question whether Russia is discussing the topic of releasing Ruben Vardanyan from prison in Azerbaijan.

"You know, I have not seen whether the issue of Ruben Vardanyan, who is not an Armenian citizen, being in an Azerbaijani prison, was raised during the Armenian-Azerbaijani contacts. Now, if you provide me with this information, it will be very interesting and useful for me to know about it. Let me remind once again that Ruben Vardanyan renounced his Russian citizenship—and did so, openly. Therefore, such questions should be addressed to Baku and Yerevan," said Zakharova.

She emphasized that, in general, Russia has always supported the implementation of tripartite agreements, the key element of which is the release of all detained persons.

In September 2022, Ruben Vardanyan moved from Russia to Nagorno-Karabakh and was appointed state minister on November 4. On February 23, 2023, he was relieved of this post, but remained in Nagorno-Karabakh—until the Azerbaijani military aggression in September 2023.

On September 27 of the same year, Vardanyan was illegally arrested by Azerbaijan, and he is still in a prison in the Azerbaijani capital of Baku—together with some other political and military figures of Nagorno-Karabakh.

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