YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 10, ARMENPRESS. Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan commented on the statements regularly coming from Azerbaijan with which an attempt is made to draw parallels between the Lachin corridor and the unblocking of all regional transportation and economic communications as envisaged by the November 9 trilateral statement.
“Among the actions and statements contrary to the trilateral statement of November 9 is the manipulative narrative that is developing by Azerbaijan for a long time around the Lachin corridor and the attempt to draw parallels between the Lachin corridor and the unblocking of all regional transportation and economic ties. The President of Azerbaijan is trying to create fictitious grounds for closing the Lachin corridor, blocking the Armenians of Nagorno Karabakh and subjecting them to genocide and depatriation under the pretext that Armenia is not fulfilling its commitments”, Pashinyan said.
He recalled that the regulations of the 2020 November 9 trilateral statement leave no room for such parallels, adding that this is substantiated by several facts.
“Lachin corridor is written in points 3rd and 6th of the trilateral statement, in other words the Lachin corridor is directly named as such. There is no term corridor in point 9th of the same statement, there is no mentioning of any territory of Armenia or any place name. According to point 6th of the trilateral statement, the Lachin corridor is not only a road or a transportation route, but also is a 5 kilometer wide area. There is no mentioning of such a territory in point 9th and there is a talk only about the transportation communication. According to point 6th of the trilateral statement, the Lachin corridor remains under the control of the Russian peacekeeping contingent. Point 9th says control over transport communication between the western regions of Azerbaijan and the Nakhichevan Autonomous Republic is exercised by the Border Guard Service bodies of the FSS of Russia. This issue is additionally clarified by point 3rd of N695 decree of the Russian President “On Ensuring Peace in Nagorno Karabakh” dated on November 10, 2020, which says: “To the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation to exercise control to the provision by Armenia of transport links between the western regions of Azerbaijan and the Nakhichevan Autonomous Republic for the unhindered movement of citizens, goods and vehicles in both directions”. In other words, there is no talk about control over any of our sovereign territory and alienation of any of our sovereign functions, and cannot be. The talk concerns conducting control over the implementation of the agreements, and only this can be done by the Border Guard Service of the FSS of Russia”, the PM stated.
He added that according to point 6th of the trilateral statement, the Lachin corridor has been created only for establishing uninterrupted and secure connection between Nagorno Karabakh and Armenia as a security guarantee, as the only and alternative way of life.
“Point 9th is about the unblocking of transportation and economic communications in the region, and the transportation communication between the western regions of Azerbaijan and the Nakhichevan Autonumous Republic is mentioned only in this context, and this communication, accordingly, is a part of the process of unblocking the region’s transportation and economic communications. This is also made clear by the trilateral statement of January 11, 2021, which is the opening of point 9th of the 2020 November 9 trilateral statement, a document explaining its meaning”, the Prime Minister said.
Pashinyan noted that the accusations against Armenia on violating point 9th of the 2020 November 9 statement are totally groundless. “Armenia has only one obligation with that point – to ensure the transport communication between the western regions of Azerbaijan and Nakhichevan, moreover, no specific route is mentioned in the November 9th statement or any other statement. The Republic of Armenia has always been ready and now also is ready to ensure that communication, and the government’s draft decision on creating border crossing points on the Armenia-Azerbaijan border has been put into circulation for this purpose, and as a result of the approval of this decision, Azerbaijan can get a connection with Nakhichevan through the roads of Armenia. This decision is not being approved because of one reason, Azerbaijan does not want that road. This means that Armenia completely fulfills its commitment, and that is Azerbaijan that doesn’t want to use that opportunity. Moreover, this refusal is totally incomprehensible. If Azerbaijan really wants peace and is inclined to peace as it announces, then let’s open these checkpoints, let’s create an opportunity for the people. It’s clear that they will first hesitate, will think, but when they are convinced in the sincerity of intentions, the citizens of both Armenia and Azerbaijan will definitely start using this new opportunity of movement”, the PM said.
Talking about the construction of new roads, PM Pashinyan said Armenia does not have such a commitment by the 2020 November 9 trilateral statement or any other statement and document. “Point 9th of the statement envisages such opportunity in case of the consent of the sides. And Armenia is ready to give its consent. And this consent is not taking place because of one reason: Azerbaijan continues carrying out aggressive rhetoric and actions opposing the agreements reached and the statements signed”, he said.
He stated that the President of Azerbaijan rejected the agreement reached in Brussels on December 14, 2021 at the presence of the President of the European Council Charles Michel, over which there is also a public statement. Accordingly, the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan agreed to start the restoration works of Yeraskh-Ordubad-Meghri-Horadiz railway and have clearly recorded that the railway should operate in accordance with the legislation of the two countries.
The PM said that the Azerbaijani President himself refused to sign the document enshrining this agreement. “It seemed, the situation was very simple, only what was publicly announced was to be put on paper and signed, but Azerbaijan refused. Today as well, the President of Azerbaijan refuses that, and I officially announce that I am ready today to sign the document enshrining this agreement”, the PM said.
He once again emphasized that the Azerbaijani President himself refuses the proposal to build new communications which Armenia has presented to Azerbaijan back in December 2021. “Moreover, we are going to present a new proposal on this topic soon. If that proposal will not be acceptable for Azerbaijan, we have another proposal as well”, Nikol Pashinyan said.