Tehran calls on the parties to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict to immediately cease hostilities and move to a peaceful settlement of the crisis, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hossein Jaberi Ansari said.
Nagorny Karabakh, a breakaway region on Azerbaijani territory with a predominantly ethnic Armenian population, has been at the center of a bitter conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia.
“We urge Azerbaijan and Armenia to cease clashes promptly and use all their might to restore tranquility and peaceful settlement of differences within the peace groups and under the United Nation,” Ansari was quoted as saying by the IRNA news agency Saturday.
Reports of an escalation of the conflict in the disputed area caused Iran’s deep concern, he noted, especially since the region needs stability amid the “destructive acts of extremist groups.”
“We invite both of our northern neighbors to restraint and avoiding any action than can turn the situation more difficult,” Ansari stressed.
A ceasefire was agreed on in 1994, but a permanent peace deal has still not been signed. Since 1992, the OSCE Minsk Group and its co-chairs Russia, France and the United States have been negotiating a lasting and peaceful settlement of the conflict.
Putin, Walter Steinmeier calls for end to violence in Nagorno-Karabakh
President Vladimir Putin urged the warring sides to immediately observe the ceasefire and “to exercise restraint so as to avert new human casualties,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov was quoted as saying by the Interfax news agency.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu have talked by phone with their Armenian and Azeri counterparts.
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, meanwhile, called on both sides “to immediately stop fighting and to fully respect the ceasefire.”
As Nagorno-Karabakh violence flares, Ban urges ‘immediate end to fighting’
Deeply disturbed by the recent reports of large-scale ceasefire violations along the Line of Contact in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today urged all relevant parties to put an immediate end to the fighting and take urgent steps to de-escalate the situation.
A statement issued by Mr. Ban’s spokesperson said the UN chief is particularly concerned by the reported use of heavy weapons and by the large numbers of casualties, including among the civilian population.
“The Secretary-General urges all relevant parties to put an immediate end to the fighting, fully respect the ceasefire agreement and take urgent steps to de-escalate the situation,” said the statement.
United States condemns ceasefire ciolations along Nagorno-Karabakh Line of Contact
The United States condemns in the strongest terms the large-scale ceasefire violations along the Nagorno-Karabakh Line of Contact, which have resulted in a number of reported casualties, including civilians, said in press statement of Secretary of State John Kerry on April 2.
“We extend our condolences to all affected families. We urge the sides to show restraint, avoid further escalation, and strictly adhere to the ceasefire. The unstable situation on the ground demonstrates why the sides must enter into an immediate negotiation under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs on a comprehensive settlement of the conflict”, said in statement.
The US reiterate that there is no military solution to the conflict.
“As a co-chair country, the United States is firmly committed to working with the sides to reach a lasting and negotiated peace”, said in statement.
Turkey condemns attacks by Armenia on Azerbaijan’s Karabakh
Turkey’s Foreign Ministry has condemned Armenian attacks which have led to two days of fighting over the occupied Karabakh region, Turkish daily Sabah reported.
“We condemn artillery fire and attacks which were started by Armenia against Azerbaijan on the night of April 1 along the contact line and [which] affected civil society,” the ministry said in a statement on Saturday.
“We call upon Armenia to stick to the ceasefire and end to the clashes as soon as possible,” the ministry added.
The ministry said there was a risk of similar clashes unless the Armenian occupation ends.
OSCE Minsk Group to mull Karabakh conflict’s aggravation
OSCE’s Minsk Group will hold a meeting the next week in Vienna, Austria, to discuss the sharp aggravation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, RIA Novosti reported April 2.
“Given the continuing aggravation along the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict’s contact line and the OSCE’s role in its resolution, the three co-chairs (Russia, the US and France) for the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict will meet in Vienna the next week as part of the ongoing regular consultations,” said the report.
The co-chairs are expected to inform the members of the Minsk Group, consisting of a number of OSCE member-states, about the situation and the co-chairs’ further steps to find a way to facilitate an early resolution of this protracted conflict, according to the report.