YEREVAN, November 13. /ARKA/. The status of Nagorno-Karabakh will be determined after the rights of residents of the region are clarified, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters on Thursday.
“Now the issue of the status of Nagorno-Karabakh is the main topic of the political process, since the process of restoring Azerbaijan’s control over 5 and then 2 more regions is already underway. It is creating temporary administrations and will restore peaceful life,” Lavrov said.
He noted that the issue of the return of refugees and internally displaced persons to Nagorno-Karabakh and other adjacent regions has yet to be resolved.
“The status of Nagorno-Karabakh has not been determined, it will be determined after the rights of all categories of residents of this region are clarified,” Lavrov said.
Lavrov said he proceeds from the fact that this status will be determined depending on what actions everyone should take to help restore ethno-confessional harmony in Nagorno-Karabakh, as it was for many years until the collapse of the Soviet Union and the ensuing war, which ended in very deplorable consequences.
“The status can be determined only after it becomes clear what rights will be granted to all those who lived in Nagorno-Karabakh and have the right to return there, and, of course, those who has lived in this territory all the time – this applies to Armenians and Azerbaijanis,” Lavrov said.
According to him, it is necessary to restore trust and interethnic and inter-confessional peace, for this it is necessary to restore temples and mosques, to establish everyday life as it was when representatives of all nationalities lived there.
“This is very difficult to do, and we do not set any artificial deadlines for determining the status of Nagorno-Karabakh. We already see that Azerbaijani refugees will have the opportunity to return to the south of Nagorno-Karabakh, including the Shushi region, we will provide calm in this area,” said Lavrov.
He stressed that when all this happens, the status issue will lose its urgency and can be resolved very quickly and smoothly.
On November 9, the leaders of the Russia, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a statement to end the war in the zone of the Karabakh conflict from November 10. According to the statement, Azerbaijani and Armenian forces were to stop at their positions. A number of districts controlled by the Armenian forces of Karabakh are to be returned to Azerbaijan, including the city of Shushi, as well as Aghdam, Kelbajar and Lachin regions, with the exception of a 5-kilometer corridor connecting Karabakh with Armenia through Lachin.
A Russian peacekeeping contingent is deployed along the line of contact in Karabakh and along the Lachin corridor. Internally displaced persons and refugees are returning to Karabakh and surrounding areas. The sides exchange prisoners of war, hostages and other detained persons and bodies of the dead.