Washington 6 August : After renewed fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the conflicting region of Nagorno-Karabakh , earlier this week, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken called on the leaders of both countries to pursue “direct talks” to end the conflict.Blinken made distinct phone conversations with the Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev on Friday, the news agency dpa reported with reference to State Department spokesperson Ned Price.
Blinken “urged for a direct dialog between Armenia and Azerbaijan to settle issues related to, or related to the Nagorno Karabakh conflict”, Price said in an announcement.
Blinken said to Pashinyan that the US was “watching the situation in Nagorno Karabakh and the surrounding area closely” as he demanded “de-escalation” in his conversation with Aliyev.
Many victims and injuries have been reported as fighting in Nagorno-Karabakh escalated on Wednesday.
The Azerbaijani army claimed that it had taken over mountainous regions of the region, and that Armenian combatants were killed.
Armenia declared that Azerbaijan was in violation of a ceasefire deal that was in force since the beginning of 2020, the year that the war ended.
The area of Nagorno-Karabakh with its predominant Armenian population was annexed to Azerbaijan in the Soviet period.
Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Nagorno-Karabakh claimed independence from Baku as the Republic of Artsakh, backed by Yerevan and Yerevan, triggering a bloody six-year conflict.
The war was over in 1994 with Armenia winning the war but the Republic of Artsakh was never recognized internationally and remained for many years in legal uncertainty.
In the year 2020, Azerbaijan took back large portions of Nagorno-Karabakh in an additional, less tense conflict.
Under the conditions of the ceasefire, Armenia was required to make significant territorial concessions.
This included accepting that access to Nagorno Karabakh from Armenia could only be obtained via a corridor supervised by Russian peacekeepers.
This ceasefire has been broken multiple times since, but.