Armenian and Russian defense ministers discussed Karabakh, cooperation issues

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YEREVAN, January 21. /ARКА/. Armenian Defense Minister Vagharshak Harutyunyan held a telephone conversation with Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu, the press service of the Armenian Defense Ministry reported.

It said the defense ministers discussed urgent issues of bilateral cooperation in the field of defense, the operational situation in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone, the return of Armenian prisoners of war and hostages, held in Azerbaijan as well as a number of issues related to the search for the missing soldiers.

Harutyunyan thanked his colleague for the effective activities of the peacekeeping contingent in Nagorno-Karabakh, as well as for substantial assistance in resolving security issues by deploying Russian border guards in the Syunik region of Armenia.

The defense ministers of the two countries also exchanged views on the latest military-political events in the region.

On September 27, 2020, Azerbaijani armed forces, backed by Turkey and foreign mercenaries and terrorists, attacked Nagorno-Karabakh along the entire front line using rocket and artillery weapons, heavy armored vehicles, military aircraft and prohibited types of weapons such as cluster bombs and phosphorus weapons.

After 44 days of the war, on November 9, the leaders of Russia, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a statement on the cessation of all hostilities. According to the document, the parties stopped at where they were at that time. The town of Shushi, the districts of Agdam, Kelbajar and Lachin were handed over to Azerbaijan, with the exception of a 5-kilometer corridor connecting Karabakh with Armenia.

A Russian peacekeeping contingent was deployed along the contact line in Karabakh and along the Lachin corridor. Internally displaced persons and refugees are returning to Karabakh and adjacent regions, prisoners of war, hostages and other detained persons and bodies of the dead are being exchanged.

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