President Serzh Sargsyan received the RF Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov
President Serzh Sargsyan received today the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov who has arrived to Armenia on official visit.
At the meeting discussed were issues pertinent to the Armenian-Russian relations and situation resulting from the military offensive unleashed by Azerbaijan on April 2-5 in the NK conflict zone.
Welcoming the RF Minister of Foreign Affairs to Armenia, President Sargsyan noted that the agenda of the Armenian-Russian relations is pretty full and that at different, including high-level meetings, the parties discuss a wide range of issues. “As it happens, the visit of the Chairman of the RF Government Dmitry Medvedev and your visit are taking place at the moment when the situation in our region is rather tense. It is no secret that the situation has been created by the irresponsible actions of Azerbaijan. By unleashing large-scale military actions against Nagorno Karabakh, Azerbaijan has proved once again that Karabakh and Azerbaijan have nothing in common. Azerbaijan, which utilized its entire military force, certainly received a worthy counterblow. However, in my opinion, the actions of Azerbaijan have thrown the process of negotiations far from its track. In that process, we were always constructive, were always confident that eventually the Co-Chairs of the Minsk Group would present their vision for the resolution of the problem, and would spell out the name of the party which rejects the proposals. Unfortunately, the Azeris decided that they could violate with impunity the agreement signed in 1994-95 as well as the commitments which were reached in the course of these lengthy negotiations. We started this phase in 2007. Nine years in a row, we were an active participant and witness to the process, trying to find mutually acceptable solutions; we were trying to be constructive. We were convinced that the problem could be solved exclusively based on compromise, through peaceful means, however today we have what we have. For that very reason, your point of view is very important to me: why did it happen? We certainly have our own ideas, however you are much more informed and we would appreciate if you present us your point of view,” said President Serzh Sargsyan.
The RF Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov thanked the President of Armenia for the opportunity to meet with him and presented the results of the negotiations conducted prior to his meeting with the President of Armenia. “We have already had good negotiations; have observed the course of implementation of the bilateral agreements which you have reached with President Putin. In some instances we are having delays; however adherence to all principled agreements is there. It is our main objective – to work on the tasks issued by the Presidents. We have also discussed the situation with the resolution of the Nagorno Karabakh issue, and we are deeply concerned with what has happened. As you know, from the very beginning, the Russian side, the President personally has been working to stop the breach of the agreements signed in 94-95 which are of permanent nature. Today we have reiterated that and called to under no circumstance disregard these most important documents. The bloodshed was stopped. Nevertheless, as you understand, the situation has not entirely stabilized, and we believe that at this stage it is extremely important to call to life agreements between you and the President of Azerbaijan reached five years ago with the Russian mediation – about the mechanisms for the investigation of the incidents, prevention of incidents and confidence building measures, so that any threat of confrontation is reduced even if through simple technical steps. Corresponding instructions have been given to the OSCE, and now we want the German presidency engage in it actively. I understand what you mean, Mr. President, of course, that at the moment it is difficult to come back to the table of negotiations. The situation should calm down a little, people should calm down a little. We once again express our condolences for the victims of this conflict, but I agree with you that there is no military solution to the conflict, which means we need to make efforts for its political resolution.
As for why the situation has reached such a critical point, I cannot speak for Armenia, Azerbaijan, or Karabakh, but I think if we were able to move forward in the political process, even a little, if we were able to preset the general principles which could have been accepted by the sides at least as a basis for the creation of the legally binding documents, it would certainly played an important role for resuming the negotiations and would also become a constraint against the outbreak of hostilities. But I repeat that only the parties themselves can find solutions. We have been trying and will continue to try to help the Co-Chairs together with Americans and French. We have a consolidated position, and as I understand, Armenia supports the position that the triumvirate of the Co-Chairs together with the OSCE should continue its work as the main coordinator in accordance with the mandate which the parties agreed to provide to that mechanism. We do not welcome a search for other, parallel avenues, or attempts to create mechanisms which are not endorsed by all parties. It will only deviate from the main problem, i.e. to ensure security, to prevent new loss of lives, but at the same time conditions for the political process should be created,” said the RF Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov.