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19 Nov, 2020 18:31

Karabakh truce was about ‘saving lives, not scoring political points’: Russia’s Lavrov addresses ‘wounded pride’ of US & France

Karabakh truce was about ‘saving lives, not scoring political points’: Russia’s Lavrov addresses ‘wounded pride’ of US & France

The aim of the Moscow-brokered armistice between Azerbaijan and Armenia was to stop the violence in Nagorno-Karabakh as soon as possible, Russia's Foreign Minister has told RT, adding that there was no time for third-party talks.

The ceasefire was not a result of Moscow’s desire to gain some international prestige, but that of a wish to preserve human life and end the military clashes on its doorstep, Sergey Lavrov said. The foreign minister also called concerns expressed by the US and France over the deal somewhat misplaced.

In a situation when every minute counted and every such minute cost human lives, it would have been … morally incorrect and unethical … to call Washington or Paris to discuss whether they would support this or that wording.

As co-chairs of the Minsk group on Nagorno-Karabakh, the US and France, welcomed the cessation of hostilities and admitted that “Russia’s actions contributed to peace”, as the US embassy in Russia put it. Nevertheless, they also repeatedly stated that Russia has some “questions” to answer.

Also on rt.com America no longer ‘a neighbor to every country on Earth’ — surprise Armenia/Azerbaijan armistice evidence of changing world order

Lavrov called such an ambiguous stance a sign of “wounded pride” on the part of the two western nations while maintaining that such feelings have no place when human lives are at stake. “In politics, one is often guided by a desire to … win big at home or strengthen their position in some multilateral structures like the EU or just to reassert one’s leadership,” Lavrov said, calling such a state of affairs “regrettable.” 

For Russia, a display of its own “prestige” has never been the focal point, the foreign minister said.

For us, the most important thing is to resolve conflicts and crises, to prevent people’s deaths and to maintain stability, both on our borders and beyond.

On November 9, the leaders of Russia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan adopted a trilateral agreement on the cessation of fighting in Nagorno-Karabakh. The frozen conflict reignited in late September and caused thousands of casualties. As part of the deal, the sides agreed to the deployment of the Russian peacekeepers to the disputed region to monitor the ceasefire.

The dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh is decades old and both Baku and Yerevan believe they have legitimate claims on the area. The truce has left the final status of the territory unresolved, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted in an earlier interview. Yet, it also laid the groundwork for a potential way towards a resolution in the future, he added.

Also on rt.com ‘We have agreed to maintain status quo’: Putin says balance of power in disputed Karabakh must be upheld

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