Opening remarks by Acting Foreign Minister Ara Aivazian at the extended meeting with Foreign Minister of Russia Sergey Lavrov

06 May, 2021

Dear Sergei Lavrov,

Dear friends,

I am glad to welcome you in Yerevan.

Your visit is a good opportunity to continue discussing a wide range of issues of the Armenian-Russian interstate dialogue.

I hope that we will discuss the most relevant issues on the bilateral agenda, which are of strategic importance.

The allied nature of the Armenian-Russian interaction predetermines the range of tasks that we jointly implement in the interests of further strengthening the friendship of our peoples, the development of our countries in the environment of security, peace and stability.

An active political dialogue and broad foreign policy coordination, a solid legal framework guiding the interaction of our countries in all spheres, including defense, create all the necessary conditions for the success of our joint efforts. We are interested in promoting bilateral relations through the consistent work of such mechanisms as the Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation, the Inter-Parliamentary Commission, as well as the Commission for Military-Technical Cooperation.

In the framework of your visit we will, certainly, consider the issue of the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process. In this context, the importance of creating conditions for the resumption of the peace process under the auspices of the only internationally mandated format: the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs, represented byRussia, France and the USA.

The most important issue is to ensure that Azerbaijan returns all prisoners of war and forcibly captured civilians. And this issue must be addressed as soon as possible, which is also attested by the mass violations of international humanitarian law. Equally important are the issues of creating elementary conditions for the return of displaced persons to their homes, the provision of humanitarian assistance to the population, and the restoration of the economy in Nagorno-Karabakh. The issue of preserving the historical-cultural heritage, fallen under the military control of Azerbaijan, is extremely urgent.

I am confident that today we will exchange views on how to move forward, including with regards to the implementation of the provisions of the statements since January 11, concerning the unblocking of transport communications.

Let us consider the latest tendencies in the development of the situation at the regional level, including in the context of promoting our interests and countering common threats.

I am ready to exchange views on collaboration in the format of multilateral and integration organizations. Being an important area of interstate cooperation, it also carries additional opportunities and preferences for the development of Armenian-Russian relations.

As you can see, the topics are very broad and substantive.

So, once again, welcome. It is a pleasure to see you.

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