Eastern Europe

Pashinyan tells what preceded Karabakh peace agreement

09:24, 30 November 2020
Pashinyan tells what preceded Karabakh peace agreement Photo: Adrien Vautie/Keystone Press Agency/Global Look Press

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said that on October 19, the President of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Arayik Harutyunyan called him and said that the war must be stopped. He stressed that ex-leaders of Karabakh Arkady Ghukasyan and Bako Sahakyan and ex-presidents of Armenia Robert Kocharian, Serzh Sargsyan, and Levon Ter-Petrosyan share the same opinion. Only after that did Pashinyan call Russian President Vladimir Putin.

I called Russian President Vladimir Putin, and he said that, in his opinion, this should be done under the logic of the Russian proposals. To postpone the issue of status, transfer the regions to Azerbaijan, deploy Russian peacekeepers, Pashinyan wrote on Facebook.

Pashinyan proposed to Putin to deploy peacekeepers along the former border of the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region (NKAO) and the Lachin corridor. The Russian leader agreed, and they decided to hold a phone call later again. According to Pashinyan, Putin phoned him the next day, saying that the President of Azerbaijan agreed. However, the peacekeepers should be deployed along the current contact line since the Azerbaijanis did not agree to withdraw from the positions taken under control in Hadrut and Talish.

The Armenian side was also supposed to undertake obligations to return Azerbaijanis to Shusha. It would have made the truce impossible since I said that even if I agree on the issue of Hadrut, I cannot imagine the possibility of surrendering Shusha to Azerbaijan, Pashinyan said.

According to him, Putin was surprised by this answer, but after the presented arguments, he agreed, noting that he was not well informed about some of the subtleties. According to Pashinyan, the problem was that in this case, the Azerbaijani population of Shusha would exceed 90%, and they would control the road to Stepanakert.

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan wrote on his social network page that he called Russian President Vladimir Putin twice within an hour and they discussed the situation on Nagorno-Karabakh.

In particular, Pashinyan noted that he and Putin considered issues related to the residential settlements in the Lachin corridor. Moreover, the Armenian Prime Minister and the Russian President talked about missing persons, search operations, the exchange of prisoners and bodies of the dead between the parties, and the deployment of peacekeepers.

Pashinyan wrote on Facebook that such discussions take place regularly, sometimes several times a day. The parties do not always go public about the telephone conversations and their content, the prime minister wrote on Facebook.