Dmitry Peskov: The main thing is to convince Yerevan and Baku to abandon forceful methods

Unfortunately, the current surge in tensions and renewed hostilities pose a serious challenge

Unfortunately, the current surge in tensions and renewed hostilities pose a serious challenge


On Tuesday, September 19, a Kremlin official representative held a briefing for representatives of Russian and foreign media – the conversation was devoted mainly to the situation related to the aggravation around Karabakh.

“We are really concerned about the sharp escalation of tensions and the outbreak of hostilities,” Peskov said. – The first thing for us – against the backdrop of the military operation carried out by the armed forces of Azerbaijan – is to ensure the safety of the civilian population of Karabakh. We are, of course, talking about the Armenian population. For this purpose all necessary measures must be taken. We are in contact with both the Armenian side and the Azerbaijani side. First of all, of course, our military is now working to return the settlement process to the political and diplomatic channel. For this, the only substantive basis is the trilateral documents of two or three years ago, which were signed between Russia, Armenia and Azerbaijan. Therefore, we encourage everyone to follow the provisions of these documents. And, naturally, taking into account those new realities, this means the fact of recognition by the Armenian side of the territory of Azerbaijan as of 1991. Hard work is currently underway. The main thing is to ensure the safety of people in Karabakh. Prevent human casualties. We read with regret the news that such victims are already taking place. And the main thing is to convince both Yerevan and Baku to abandon forceful methods and sit down at the negotiating table.

Then the press secretary answered questions from the Komsomolskaya Pravda political observer…

… – Dmitry Sergeevich, we remember that in previous times, when there were similar aggravations, the President of Russia communicated very closely and promptly with both Pashinyan and Aliyev. Have there been such contacts now? And are they planned in the coming hours? And the second question: are they going to increase the size and power of our peacekeeping contingent?

– I have already said that, first of all, now contacts are carried out through our military. And also through other departments. Communications at a higher level are also coordinated. As final agreements are reached, we will promptly inform you of such contacts. Including possible contacts at the highest level. This is the first one. As for increasing our contingent of peacekeepers, this decision, first of all, is made and proposals are formulated by our military. And, of course, this is subject to agreement with all countries. Here only the military can provide some kind of expertise on the feasibility of such an increase. But I repeat once again, our military continues its work in order to truly return this region to peace.

– But how does President Putin evaluate the work of our peacekeepers in this region?

– Peacekeepers are performing their functions, but, nevertheless, the situation remains difficult. We see that, unfortunately, the current surge in tension and the resumption of hostilities is a serious challenge, first of all, a serious threat to the civilian population.


– Is the Kremlin going to offer any additional conditions for a settlement? Türkiye proposed holding a quadrilateral meeting. Is there something similar in the plans?

– The fact is that there is a fairly solid, implementable basis for a settlement. These are the same three documents I mentioned. On the basis of these documents, an agreement can and should be reached on a return to political and diplomatic measures. Therefore, for now we focus on them.

– Does the Kremlin know anything about the state of the Russian peacekeeping mission? A strike was reported at their location. And in general, is the mission somehow involved in the settlement now?

– I was just talking about this. (See the answer to the question “KP” above) They are in direct contact with the parties, our military. And this is now their main role. All contacts are mainly through the military. So far we do not have any information that anything has happened that threatens the lives of our peacekeepers. Of course, this is another important priority for us.

– You said that a week ago Pashinyan wrote a letter to Putin. Were there any other contacts between the President and the Prime Minister of Armenia before today?

– It wasn’t me who said it, but President Putin himself – in Vladivostok. Indeed, there was a detailed letter outlining the point of view of the Armenian side on what was happening. Moreover, at that time, in fact, intensive work was taking place to resume the flow of humanitarian aid to Karabakh. And, to our satisfaction, as of yesterday, this work has been crowned with success. And the first parties went in two directions via the Agdam-Lachin road. But, unfortunately, this did not stop us from resuming hostilities. There have been no other contacts since then. But I repeat once again, other contacts are being agreed upon, we will inform you.

– Baku claims that it informed Russia about plans to launch this operation in advance. Was it so? Did Baku warn Russia?

– I cannot confirm that we were notified in advance.

– Armenian Ambassador Marukyan said that it was the United States’ turn to decide what measures would be used to resolve the conflict in Karabakh. How was this statement received in the Kremlin?

– There shouldn’t be any queue here. There must be concrete efforts based on a real tangible basis, a legal framework that makes it possible to reach a peaceful settlement. From our point of view, such a possibility exists. These are the very agreements on which we base our actions. We continue our contacts with both Baku and Yerevan.


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