Russia states that tension on the border of Armenia and Azerbaijan has abated in the past few weeks, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday.
“Over the past few weeks, it has been possible to reduce the tension as a whole. The corresponding consultations on settling the border dispute will continue,” the Russian diplomat said.
Russia continues active mediatory efforts aimed at de-escalating the situation, the spokeswoman said.
“Close coordination has been organized with Baku and Yerevan through the Foreign and Defense Ministries and the Border Guard Services,” the diplomat added.
“We see the sustainable and lasting solution of the problem in the quickest start of the work for delimiting the border between the two countries with its subsequent demarcation. We confirm the readiness to render the most active assistance to this process,” the Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman stressed.
Renewed clashes between Azerbaijan and Armenia erupted on September 27, 2020, with intense battles in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh. On November 9, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan signed a joint statement on a complete ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh starting from November 10.
Under the document, the Azerbaijani and Armenian sides maintained the positions that they had held, seven districts passed over to Baku’s control, and Russian peacekeepers were deployed along the engagement line and the Lachin corridor in Nagorno-Karabakh.
The Armenian-Azerbaijani border was moved close to Armenia’s Syunik and Gegharkunik provinces. The situation in that area aggravated on May 12, when Armenia’s Defense Ministry reported that Azerbaijani forces had attempted to carry out “certain activities” in one of the Syunik border region’s districts to “adjust the border,” moving 3.5 kilometers into the country. The ministry added that the Azerbaijani troops halted their activities following some steps taken by Armenian forces.
Nevertheless, both sides continue periodically reporting new incidents. Thus, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry reported on May 27 that six Armenian servicemen were captured during an attempt to cross into Azerbaijani territory for subversive activity. Armenia’s Defense Ministry confirmed that the Armenian servicemen had been captured but noted that they had been taken prisoner while carrying out engineering works in the border area of the Gegharkunik province of Armenia.