January 7, 2021 – 17:24 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net – Armenian government spokeswoman Mane Gevorgyan has said that economic and transport links in the region can be unblocked only after the return of all Armenian prisoners of war from Azerbaijan.
Gevorgyan’s comments came after Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev said “concrete work is underway to open the Nakhichevan corridor”. The spokesperson reminded that the November 10 statement does not provide for any “corridor” connecting Azerbaijan with Nakhijevan. She said Point 9 of the statement states that economic and transport links in the region shall be unblocked, which means, among other things, that Armenia will guarantee the safety of transport links between Azerbaijan and the Nakhichevan Autonomous Republic.
“Armenia, of course, is interested in the possibility of transporting cargo through the territory of Azerbaijan to Russia and Iran and back. We are interested in the possibility of the transfer of Armenian products through road and rail transportation to Russia and Iran. In this context Armenia, naturally, is ready to ensure communication between the Eastern part of Azerbaijan and the Nakhichevan Autonomous Republic,” Gevorgyan told Armenpress.
“However, a thorough discussion of all these issues will be difficult without the complete implementation of Point 8 of the statement, which envisages the exchange of captives, hostages, other detained persons and the bodies of the dead. The Armenian side also prioritizes the expansion of the scale of ongoing search and rescue operations in battle zones. The recent statements made by Azerbaijan on this topic are puzzling and question Baku’s commitment to implement the agreements of the November 10 statement. There are still Armenian captives in Baku, there is extensive evidence proving ill treatment of Armenian POWs [in Azerbaijan]. There is evidence of execution of the captives, and all that evidence must be investigated in detail, including in international platforms.”
At the same time, Gevorgyan added, the anti-Armenian propaganda of the past decade still continues in Azerbaijan.
“In order to establish stability and peace in the region, it is necessary to put an end to provocative actions and statements,” the spokeswoman added.
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, Russian and Azerbaijani Presidents Vladimir Putin and Ilham Aliyev on November 9 signed a statement to end the war in Karabakh after almost 45 days. Under the deal, the Armenian side has returned all the seven regions surrounding Nagorno-Karabakh, having lost a part of Karabakh itself in hostilities.