21 November 202013:46

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at a meeting with Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, Yerevan, November 21, 2020

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Mr Pashinyan,

Thank you for the warm welcome accorded to our delegation.

I have come here in accordance with your agreement with President of Russia Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister of Russia Mikhail Mishustin to review all aspects of our cooperation and our allied and strategic relations. Our key priority of course, is the settlement of all problems related to Nagorno-Karabakh.

The statement adopted on November 9 by the leaders of the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Russian Federation created conditions for addressing these issues on the basis of the agreements that have been put down on paper and signed by the three parties. They concern, first of all, the return of refugees and the settlement of all humanitarian issues in the current situation. We are fully committed to doing this. We are grateful for the high appreciation of the Russian peacekeepers’ role both in ensuring safety, which is the main component of their mandate, and also in their everyday assistance to the people who are returning and need humanitarian support. In addition, the Interdepartmental Humanitarian Response Centre, which has been established and started working in accordance with an executive order of President Putin, will be closely involved in all these matters.

I have already told you that we set high store by the role of international UN bodies and are urging them to act more energetically and proactively to help the local residents, and we also support the international activities of the ICRC, which has also been working in Nagorno-Karabakh.

The entire package of our relations will be discussed during this visit by the deputy prime ministers and the healthcare and emergencies ministers of our countries. You have already had a meeting today with Defence Minister of Russia Sergey Shoigu. Russian Railways CEO Oleg Belozyorov has come to Yerevan as well.

I am convinced that the talks to be held by these officials will produce a positive comprehensive picture of the forward-looking movement of our ties and will also support your efforts, as we sincerely want, to stabilise the situation in Armenia and settle the problems facing Nagorno-Karabakh.

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