Turkish, Azerbaijani leaders discuss latest developments in Nagorno-Karabakh after Moscow meeting
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Azerbaijani President İlham Aliyev exchanged a phone conversation on the latest developments in Nagorno-Karabakh and after a Moscow meeting between Aliyev and Armenian President Nikol Pashinyan upon the invitation of Russian leader Vladimir Putin.
“During the phone call, President Erdoğan noted that Azerbaijan’s victory in Nagorno-Karabakh, which was won following a great struggle, created new opportunities for regional peace and stability, and said that Turkey will continue to support and contribute to Azerbaijan, in all areas, in this new period,” read a statement by the Presidential Communications Directorate late January 17.
“President Erdoğan also expressed his pleasure at the launch of the repair and rebuilding effort in Nagorno-Karabakh, which Azerbaijan has liberated from Armenia’s occupation,” it added.
The phone talk took place after Putin hosted Aliyev and Pashinyan in Moscow last week to discuss the implementation of the cease fire agreement brokered on Nov. 10, 2020. The leaders signed a joint statement following the meetings which stipulates the establishment of a working group by the deputy prime ministers of the three countries to study the development of transport infrastructure and the economy of the region.
[HH] Turkish-Joint Center being built
In the meantime, the construction of the Turkish-Russian Joint Center to monitor the ceasefire in Aghdam province of Azerbaijan is continuing, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu told Hürriyet Daily News on Jan. 15.
Some 60 Turkish and 60 Russian soldiers will operate in the center which will be located around eight kilometers to the Contact Line, Çavuşoğlu said, who had a meeting with Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov in Islamabad on Jan. 14.
“An agreement on the status of the Russian peacekeeping force has to be signed. We are encouraging Russians to sign it as soon as possible. Third countries, including Minsk Group three co-chair countries, are suggesting the same thing,” Çavuşoğlu said.
The problem in the region is the Russian authorities’ letting the third countries’ nationals, including the Armenian foreign minister, through the Lachin Corridor although it’s Azerbaijani territory.
“Permission has to be sought from Azerbaijan. Nagorno-Karabakh had an autonomy but [talks for] its status are postponed. But this is Azerbaijan territory according to the U.N., international law and the resolutions of the OSCE [Organization of Security and Cooperation in Europe]. That means even though the region will have no special status, it is within the boundaries of Azerbaijan,” he said.
The situation has now changed, Çavuşoğlu said, as the representatives of international organizations are reaching the region by using Azerbaijan territories and upon Azerbaijan’s permission.