Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan chaired a special meeting of the Security Council. Besides the members of the Security Council, attending the meeting were the Speaker of the National Assembly Ararat Mirzoyan, the Minister of Territorial Administration Suren Papikyan, the leader of the “My Step” faction of the National Assembly Lilit Makunts, the leader of the “Bright Armenia” faction Edmon Marukyan, representative of the “Prosperous Armenia” faction Arman, Chief of Staff of the President Emil Tarasyan.
To begin with the Prime Minister referred to the tension in Artsakh and on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border.
“First, in the Khtsaberd, Hin Tagher section of Artsakh, yesterday our positions were attacked by Azerbaijani units, according to some information, Turkish special forces also too part,” the Prime Minister said, adding that the attack took place as the Russian peacekeepers had not yet been deployed in the area.
“Units of our Armed Forces, the Artsakh Defense Army fought and resisted,” he said, noting that at least six were wounded in clashes.
“Shortly after the start of hostilities yesterday, a small Russian peacekeeping unit approached the combat zone, as a result of which the fighting stopped, but the Azerbaijani special forces took control of the villages of Hin Tagher and Khtsaberd. Russian peacekeepers deployed more forces in the section this morning, and the situation is relatively stable at the moment, at least the presence of peacekeepers there gives some confidence that there is a high probability of avoiding further escalation,” the Prime Minister said.
According to him, the primary issue now is to ensure that the situation in the section fully complies with the provisions of the November 9 statement, which stipulates that the troops remain at their positions occupied along the line of contact at the moment of signing. The villages were under the control of the Artsakh Defense Army at the moment of signing of the statement.
Therefore, he said, regardless of the presence of Russian peacekeepers, yesterday’s actions of the Azerbaijani forces definitely violate the provisions of the joint statement of November 9.
Next, the Prime Minister stressed the need to make decisions connected with Kubatlu and Zangelan regions.
“Of course, there is no mention of these areas in the joint statement, because at the time of signing the statement, these areas, unfortunately, were mostly under the control of Azerbaijani forces, i.e. only small parts remained,” the Prime Minister said, adding that the borders should be clarified here to avoid possible tensions in the section.
“The process of exchanging prisoners is also very important, here we have some progress or a serious opportunity for progress and we have to make concrete decisions in the coming days,” PM Pashinyan stated.