Azerbaijan, Armenia agree to hold talks on possible peace treaty

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The foreign ministers of Azerbaijan and Armenia on Monday agreed to hold meetings on a joint border commission and a separate working group for a possible peace treaty.

The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry announced in a statement that both meetings would take place “in the near future” following a phone call between Baku and Yerevan’s foreign ministers.

“The Ministers had an exchange of views as a follow-up to the agreements reached at the level of the leaders of both states,” the statement added.

Baku and Yerevan “agreed on parameters of the participants” in the joint border commission and discussed “the issues related to the continuation of steps in the humanitarian sphere,” it added.

Meanwhile, the Armenian Foreign Ministry also confirmed the agreement in a statement, saying the two sides “agreed on the structure of Commission on delimitation and border security.”

Azerbaijan’s Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov discussed issues related to addressing humanitarian problems and preparing work on peace negotiations with his Armenian counterpart Ararat Mirzoyan, the statement added.

Earlier this month, European Council President Charles Michel hosted a meeting between Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian in Brussels where the two sides expressed willingness to secure a peace agreement.

Relations between the former Soviet republics have been tense since 1991, when the Armenian military occupied Nagorno-Karabakh, now known as Karabakh, a territory internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, and seven adjacent regions.

New clashes erupted on Sept. 27, 2020, and during the six-week war, Azerbaijan retook several cities and 300 settlements and villages.

The conflict ended in November 2020 in a Russia-brokered deal that saw Armenia cede chunks of territory it had occupied for decades.

In January 2021, the leaders of the three countries agreed to develop economic ties and infrastructure for the benefit of the entire Caucasus region. -Agencies