“There is no Armenian army in Nagorno-Karabakh” – Pashinyan on Aliyev’s accusations
Pashinyan’s reaction to Aliyev’s speech
“Unfounded accusations against Armenia by Azerbaijan do not stop. In particular, Baku continues to demand that Armenia withdraw its military units from Nagorno-Karabakh, while Yerevan has no soldiers here. I state once again: there is no Armenian army in Nagorno-Karabakh,” the Prime Minister of Armenia said at a government meeting.
As for the Defense Army of the unrecognized NKR, “the reasons for its existence every day can be found in the official propaganda and actions of Azerbaijan,” the Armenian prime minister said. Their “bare essence” is to “subject the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh to ethnic cleansing and genocide.” He said that today there is a “creeping implementation of this policy in NK” and that due to “the illegal blockade of the Lachin corridor, the humanitarian crisis in NK is aggravating day by day.”
For more than half a year, the only road connecting Nagorno-Karabakh with Armenia has been blocked. At first, Russian peacekeepers and the International Committee of the Red Cross carried humanitarian aid to the Armenians living in NK. But since June 15, Baku has also banned humanitarian supplies. This decision followed an unsuccessful attempt to plant an Azerbaijani flag on the Hakari Bridge.
Statements are regularly heard from Azerbaijan that Armenia should withdraw its troops from NK. The last such statement was made by Ilham Aliyev at a meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the member states of the Non-Aligned Movement: “On the territory of Azerbaijan, where Russian peacekeepers are temporarily stationed, there are still remnants of the armed forces of Armenia.”
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Aliyev: “Armenia is preventing the opening of the Zangezur corridor”
The day before, on July 5, Ilham Aliyev spoke at a ministerial meeting of the coordinating bureau of the Non-Aligned Movement, held in Baku. In addition to demanding the withdrawal of the Armenian Armed Forces from NK, he said that the local “military and paramilitary formations must be disarmed.”
The President of Azerbaijan, once again, touched upon the topic of the so-called “Zangezur corridor” and expressed dissatisfaction with the fact that Armenia is preventing its opening.
He claims that Yerevan made a similar commitment, according to the November 2020 announcement that ended hostilities in Karabakh.
However, the Armenian authorities, in response to all such statements, constantly answer that this document refers to the unblocking of regional communications, but not to the provision of an extraterritorial corridor.
"Negotiations between NK and Baku without a mediator are unrealistic." Opinion from Yerevan
The former defense minister of the unrecognized NKR, Samvel Babayan, said that it was necessary “to start a direct dialogue with Baku, establish trust, and then discuss other problems.” Commentary on Babayan’s statements
Pashinyan: “We did not undertake any corridor obligations”
The day after Aliyev’s speech, during a government meeting, Pashinyan again responded to the demand for a corridor through the territory of Armenia. He stressed that there are “ambiguous comments regarding the corridor” and accusations of non-fulfillment of their obligations from Azerbaijan:
“I have to repeat that Armenia has never taken on any written or verbal obligations [to provide a corridor through its territory] and will never accept any such comments.”
He reiterated that Yerevan is ready to unblock regional transport, but this should happen “within the framework of the sovereignty and jurisdiction of the countries.” That is, we are talking about the possibility of providing roads on which each of the countries will retain its sovereign rights. While the term “corridor” means the loss of control of the country in this territory.
Pashinyan recalled that the Armenian government has put into circulation a project according to which it plans to establish three checkpoints on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border:
“This decision is not made because of the destructive approach of Azerbaijan, which did not even initiate such a process on its part and does not want to provide roads to Armenia, continuing its 30-year policy of blockade of Armenia.”
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All information from the United States about the negotiations between the Foreign Ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan, the demand from Nagorno-Karabakh to stop them until a truce is established, as well as an expert’s comment
According to Pashinyan, Azerbaijan also continues to accuse Armenia of mining territories. He stated that these accusations were rejected at the beginning of the year by the decision of the International Court of Justice.
The prime minister said that Yerevan “showed sincerity and determination in resolving relations” and handed over to Azerbaijan all available maps of minefields:
“Today, large-scale demining works are being carried out in Azerbaijan using these maps. But Azerbaijan did not take equivalent steps in response to this and to this day continues to illegally detain Armenian prisoners of war and use them as a factor for political bargaining.”
“There is some progress, but not significant”
This is Pashinyan’s opinion on the talks held in Washington between the foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan.
“Unfortunately, the text of the peace treaty between Armenia and Azerbaijan is not yet ready for signing,” he said.
However, the Armenian prime minister hopes that at the upcoming meeting in Brussels with Ilham Aliyev, through the mediation of the head of the European Council, it will be possible to “materialize the progress recorded in Washington.”
He repeated his position on the lack of alternatives to the peace agenda, once again separating the signing of the peace agreement from the settlement of the Karabakh conflict:
“The rights and security of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh should be resolved within the framework of the international mechanisms of the Baku-Stepanakert dialogue, and Armenia and Azerbaijan should sign a peace treaty.”
"Baku's provocations are aimed at the complete isolation of the NK Armenians." Assessment from Yerevan
How Yerevan evaluates the installation of the Azerbaijani flag on the Hakari bridge and the ban on movement along the Lachin corridor. Comments of the Prime Minister, Minister of Defense, MPs and Ombudsman of Armenia
Pashinyan’s reaction to Aliyev’s speech