Turkey, Russia intensify talks for Nagorno-Karabakh conflict
The leaders of Turkey and Russia have intensified efforts for a lasting solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict which turned into an armed conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia after the latter’s attacks on Azerbaijani territories in late September.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Russian President Vladimir Putin had a phone conversation late Nov. 7, the Turkish Presidential Communications Directorate and Kremlin announced. A separate phone talk between the two countries’ foreign ministers, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu and Sergei Lavrov, followed the presidential dialogue devoted to the Nagorno-Karabakh problem.
According to the Presidential Communications Directorate, Erdoğan reiterated “that Armenia must withdraw from the Azerbaijani lands under its occupation,” noting that Azerbaijan’s counter-operation was limited to its own territories.
Armenia’s occupation of the Azerbaijani territories in Nagorno-Karabakh has continued since the early 1990s despite several resolutions by the U.N. Security Council that calls on Yerevan to return these lands to the legal owner, Azerbaijan.
Erdoğan told Putin that the Armenian administration should be convinced to come to the negotiation table with common sense, underscoring, “that ending the conflict with a lasting solution and bringing stability to the region were of vital importance.”
A statement issued by Kremlin also echoed that Erdoğan and Putin thoroughly discussed the situation in the Nagorno-Karabakh. Putin informed about his contacts with the leaders of Azerbaijan and Armenia which focused on finding options for an early cessation of hostilities and reaching a political and diplomatic settlement.
Both Turkey and Russia are members of the Minsk Group where the latter has long been serving as the co-chair along with France and the United States. Turkey and Azerbaijan are pressing for a change in the format of the Minsk Group so that Turkey can also take its place in the negotiations.
After Erdoğan and Putin’s conversation, the two foreign ministers also exchanged views about Nagorno-Karabakh over the phone. Diplomatic sources informed that the two ministers also assessed the latest situation in Nagorno-Karabakh.
Victory is drawing near
Earlier on Nov. 7, Erdoğan informed that he had a phone conversation with Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev from whom he “got good news” on the continued efforts of the Azerbaijani army to liberate its territories.
Erdoğan said what he heard from Aliyev made him happy, saying “We are close to victory. They were away from their occupied lands for 30 years. But now they are regaining their lands.”
Azerbaijan could liberate hundreds of villages under Armenian occupation in the ongoing fighting since late September. Turkey lends political support to Azerbaijan under the motto of “two states, one nation.”