YEREVAN, May 20. /ARKA/. The Office of Armenian President Armen Sarkissian said in a statement today that Sarkissian was not involved in a process that reportedly resulted in a document that calls for creation of a trilateral commission (Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia) that would deal with delimitation and demarcation of the Armenian-Azerbaijani border.
‘Therefore, President Sarkissian is completely unaware of the details of the document and the discussions around it. The President believes that such processes should be as transparent as possible and with the involvement of all interested parties,” the statement said.
Armenia’s Acting Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said today he was ready to sign a document that was ‘declassified’ the day before by former ambassador to the Vatican, Mikael Minasyan, who is ex-president Serzh Sargsyan’s son-in-law.
Minasyan circulated in social networks what he called a “secret document” on the delimitation of the Armenian-Azerbaijani state border, whereby Armenia is to hand over a number of Armenian villages to Azerbaijan.
According to Minasyan, this document provides, in particular, for setting up a joint Armenian-Azerbaijani commission on border delimitation and ‘transfer of 6 Armenian villages to Azerbaijan (5 in Tavush and 1 in Ararat regions).’
Several hundreds of Azerbaijani troops illegally crossed the Armenian state border on May 12, advancing several kilometers into the Armenian territory with the aim of “clarification of the borders.”
In Syunik region, about 200 Azerbaijani soldiers advanced 3-3.5 km towards the settlement of Verishen near Goris. Azeri troops also entered the Armenian territory in Gegharkunik region and because of their aggressive actions local residents cannot use their pastures and water bodies.
The Armenian Defense Ministry demanded that the Azerbaijani troops immediately return to their original positions and refrain from encroaching on the sovereign territory of Armenia. Armenia deployed additional troops to the border saying if Azeris do not withdraw within a reasonable timeframe they are ready to resolve the issue by other means, including by force.
The talks between Armenia and Azerbaijani militaries are being mediated by Russian military from the 102nd Russian military base in Gyumri, as well as by the commander of the Russian peacekeeping contingent in Artsakh. –0–