Armenia’s Acting Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan on Wednesday met with Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov in Paris in yet another round of talks over the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict mediated by the co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group. An Armenian Foreign Ministry statement said a productive and constructive exchange of views took place aimed at “reaching maximal mutual understanding and confidence.”
The Co-chairs Igor Popov of Russia, StefanVisconti of France and Andrew Shoffer of the U.S. were accompanied by the Personal Representative of the Chairperson-in-Office Andrzej Kasprzyk .
Wednesday’s meeting, which reportedly lasted over four hours, was the fourth of its kind between the two Armenian and Azerbaijani top diplomats who discussed preparing their respective populations for peace, as well as issues related to the security and stability of the region.
Immediately following the Mnatsakanyan-Mammadyarov meeting, the co-chairs briefed the State Secretary for Europe and Foreign Affairs of France Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne who reviewed the outcomes of the talks with the participants. The Co-Chairs then went to Elysée Palace, where they briefed top diplomatic advisers of President Emmanuel Macron.
The co-chairs reported that they expressed to the ministers their appreciation for the ongoing efforts of the sides to maintain an environment conducive to intensive results-oriented negotiations.
The ministers agreed upon the necessity of taking concrete measures to prepare the populations for peace.
During the meetings, the Co-Chairs reviewed with the ministers key principles and parameters for the current phase of the negotiation process. Next steps toward a possible summit between the leaders of Azerbaijan and Armenia were also discussed, with the co-chairs emphasizing the importance of possible mutually beneficial initiatives designed to fulfill the economic potential of the region.
Ahead of his meeting with Mammadyarov, Mnatsakhanyan met with co-chairs, who also held a separate meeting with the Azerbaijani Foreign Minister.
Armenia’s foreign ministry said that Mnatsakanyan, once again, reaffirmed Armenia’s approaches and position toward the resolution of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict, particularly emphasizing the importance of productive interactions for reaching maximal mutual understanding and confidence.
Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that Moscow was anticipating progress in the Karabakh conflict resolution process in 2019, saying that Russia would support efforts to resolve what he called the protracted conflict and hoped for “good will of Yerevan and Baku and the support of the international community, in the person of the Co-Chairs” to see the process through.