Pashinyan accuses Russia of failing peacekeeping mission, warns of int'l legal order crisis, Ukraine cause-and-effect
YEREVAN, SEPTEMBER 2, ARMENPRESS. Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan has expressed serious concern over Russia’s failure to implement its peacekeeping mission in Nagorno-Karabakh.
In an interview with the Italian La Repubblica newspaper, Pashinyan said that one of the main objectives of the presence of the Russian peacekeepers in Nagorno Karabakh was to ensure the security of the civilian population.
“In this case security involves the freedom of movement, and this right is not implemented, which is a matter of concern,” Pashinyan said.
He warned that there will never be peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan if the two countries fail to recognize each other’s territorial integrity on the basis of the Alma-Ata declaration.
Pashinyan reiterated the Armenian government’s commitment to advancing the peace agenda.
The Armenian Prime Minister said that the Nagorno-Karabakh humanitarian crisis is a “crisis of the international legal order”, because Azerbaijan is disregarding the ICJ rulings ordering it to open the Lachin Corridor since February 2023.
“International Court of Justice has issued a binding ruling ordering Azerbaijan to ensure bilateral transit from Nagorno Karabakh to Armenia and from Armenia to Nagorno Karabakh for persons, vehicles and goods. But this ruling was passed on February 22, 2023 and was reaffirmed on July 6, 2023 is not being implemented. This comes to prove following the humanitarian crisis in Nagorno Karabakh that, if we can say so, this is a crisis of the international legal order, if a binding ruling of the ICJ is not being implemented, such a conclusion may follow,” Pashinyan said.
Asked on the Russian peacekeepers, Pashinyan said that the mission has failed.
“I cannot make evaluation in this respect, except for agreeing with the formulation, that in fact, yes, it tuns out that the peacekeepers of the Russian Federation failed to implement the mission they have assumed under the tripartite statement and this is a matter of serious concern. Essentially, one of the main objectives of the presence of the Russian peacekeepers in Nagorno Karabakh was to ensure the security of the civilian population. In this case security involves the freedom of movement, and this right is not implemented, which is a matter of concern,” he said.
The Armenian Prime Minister said that the processes which resulted in the escalation of the Russia-Ukraine conflict actually started in the Caucasus in 2020.
“I am of the opinion that the processes which resulted in the escalation of the conflict in Ukraine, those processes had actually started much earlier, in 2020, in this region. There is serious and deep causality here,” Pashinyan said.
PM Nikol Pashinyan said that the peace architecture should feature guarantees around two issues – the reciprocal recognition of each other’s territorial integrity between Armenia and Azerbaijan and addressing the rights and security of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh.
Pashinyan also talked about the normalization with Turkey, Western efforts in the NK conflict settlement and Russia.