Russia blamed Armenia for the Failure of Nagorno-Karabakh Talks
Russia has blamed Armenia for the collapse of peace talks with Azerbaijan over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, which are being conducted under its auspices.
This is another sign of friction between the allies Moscow and Yerevan, writes "Reuters".
Armenia and Azerbaijan have been in talks for months on a peace deal for Nagorno-Karabakh, an enclave that is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan but populated mostly by Armenians.
Yerevan believes the government is behind the blockades of the only road connecting Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia, while Azerbaijan insists the participants are environmental activists protesting against illegal Armenian mining activities.
For its part, Russia accused Armenia of canceling the peace talks and urged it to return to the negotiating table.
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that Yerevan's decision not to participate in the peace talks in Moscow prevented the text of a possible peace agreement from being discussed.
"If our Armenian partners are really interested in solving these problems, then instead of engaging in scholasticism, we need to continue working together," Zakharova said.
Yerevan is unhappy that Russia, which is formally an ally of Armenia through a mutual defense treaty, is not doing more to end the blockade of the Nagorno-Karabakh road.
In November, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan expressed disappointment that the Russian-led CIS military alliance, the Collective Security Treaty Organization, did not come to his country's aid against non-member Azerbaijan.
Under a peace agreement signed in 2020, Russia deployed a peacekeeping contingent to the region and Azerbaijan agreed to ensure free movement along the Lachin Corridor, which connects Armenia to Nagorno-Karabakh. Armenia claims that Azerbaijan is not fulfilling the agreement and demands that Russian peacekeepers clear the road of the protesters.
Armenia and Azerbaijan have already fought two wars over Nagorno-Karabakh since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Since then, tensions between them have periodically renewed, and Russia has been the main mediator in reaching a peace agreement.
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