Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at talks with Acting Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia Nikol Pashiyan, Yerevan, May 6, 2021
Thank you, Mr Pashinyan,
We have been feeling the warmth of the Armenian people and our friends since the moment we arrived in Yerevan. Thank you for your personal attention to our delegation.
Today, in our continuing contact, we have had detailed, substantive and trust-based talks on the entire range of bilateral relations, regional issues, and cooperation in international organisations. Once again we reaffirmed the special significance of our allied ties and strategic partnership in all areas of our interaction.
Your political dialogue with Russian President Vladimir Putin has been very intensive even during the pandemic year. You had detailed conversations during your two meetings in Moscow and spoke on the telephone a number of times. President Putin conveys his warmest wishes for success in your efforts to develop your country and implement the agreements on the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement.
Next year we will celebrate 30 years of diplomatic relations and 25 years of the basic, groundbreaking Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance. This is a key document which determined our relations for many years and is being consistently implemented in all areas – the economy, political ties, military and military-technical cooperation.
We are committed to ensuring the security of our ally, the Republic of Armenia. This was covered both by you during your meetings with President of Russia Vladimir Putin and through interaction between our defence ministries. There can be no doubt about this.
We appreciate reaching the agreements on the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement. We are grateful to you for noting the role of Russia and personally President Putin in the efforts that made it possible to stop the hostilities and agree on a stable framework for further moves by all parties. We are supporting the activities of the Trilateral Working Group at the level of the deputy prime ministers of Russia, Armenia and Azerbaijan who are dealing with the important practical, maybe even the most important at this point, issues of unblocking the economic and transport links that will make it possible in practice (and not only at the political level, which has already been done) to lift the blockade of Armenia and ensure the mutually beneficial cooperation of the region’s countries to the benefit of all.
Obviously, our peacekeeping contingent will keep up its efforts in Nagorno-Karabakh.
The Trilateral agreement provides for the peacekeeping mandate for the security of the people in Nagorno-Karabakh and the operation of the Lachin Corridor. Our peacekeepers will do their best to resolve the remaining issues related to the exact demarcation of the contact line and ensure mutually advantageous agreements on crossing it. It will be possible to delimit and demarcate the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan as soon as these steps have been taken.
Together with the other co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, we continue to advocate the resolution of humanitarian questions including finalising the process of returning the detainees. We understand the symbolic and emotional significance of this step. We believe that we will able to resolve this issue shortly. It will create a positive and constructive atmosphere for promoting the other issues of a final settlement. We will do our best to assist in solving these issues in all formats through the realisation of the Trilateral Statements of November 10, 2020 and January 11, 2021. We will in every possible way encourage the engagement of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs in creating a most positive environment for resolving the remaining issues.
Thank you once again for the opportunity to meet with you. I know that the results of today’s meetings, both at the Foreign Affairs Ministry and with you personally, will allow us to move our allied relations forward in all areas.