YEREVAN, January 31. /ARKA/. Deputy Prime Minister of Armenia Mher Grigoryan, Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan Shahin Mustafayev and Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Aleksey Overchuk held the first meeting of the trilateral working group in Moscow on January 30, 2021 to discuss the practical modalities of the reopening of transport links in the region, the Russian government reported.
The reopening of all roads in the region stems from a statement signed by the presidents of Russia and Azerbaijan and Armenian prime minister after four-hour talks in Moscow on January 11. They also agreed to set up a joint working group that will deal with practical issues relating to restoring transport links between Armenia and Azerbaijan.
The reopening of rail and road links in the region implies reopening of roads between Azerbaijan’s exclave Nakhichevan and the rest of Azerbaijan through southeastern Armenian province of Syunik. Armenia is supposed for its part to use Azerbaijani territory as a transit route for cargo shipments to and from Russia
According to a statement on the Russian government’s website, the trilateral working group discussed January 30 the main directions of work stemming from point 9 of the trilateral statement, signed by the leaders of the three countries on November 9 – unblocking all economic and transport links in the region as well as points 2, 3, 4 of their another joint statement of January 11, 2021.
The parties agreed to create the following expert subgroups: for rail, road and combined transport; for ensuring transportation, including security, border, customs, sanitary, veterinary, phytosanitary and other types of control.
The parties agreed to complete the formation of expert subgroups by February 2, 2021 and hold their first meetings by February 5, 2021.
It was decided to hold the next meeting of the trilateral working group in Moscow. The date will be agreed by the co-chairs.
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.