Putin and Pashinyan discuss repatriation of Armenian captives from Azerbaijan

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YEREVAN, February 17. /ARKA/. Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan had a telephone conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Pashinyan’s press service reported.

It said the two men discussed the implementation of the provisions of the joint statement of November 9, 2020. In particular, they stressed the need for the early return of Armenian prisoners of war, hostages and other detainees. Pashinyan was said to express concern over Azerbaijan’s failure to fully comply with the November 9 statement.

Putin and Pashinyan also discussed some issues pertaining to cooperation between Armenia and Russia.

So far, 64 Armenians, both civilians and soldiers, and 16 Azerbaijanis have been repatriated from both countries as part of exchanges between the two sides.

Armenia and Azerbaijan earlier agreed to “all for all” swap of POWs. However, more than two months after the fighting stopped, Azerbaijan still holds unknown dozens of Armenian prisoners of war.

The Armenian authorities decline demands to disclose the exact number of Armenian prisoners held in Azerbaijan on the grounds that it is a state secret.

However, according to various sources, there are more than 140 names on the Armenian exchange list. The European Court of Human Rights said it has received requests concerning 228 Armenians held in Azerbaijani captivity.

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