YEREVAN, DECEMBER 8, ARTSAKHPRESS. The negotiations between Armenia and Azerbaijan which resulted in the joint statement were held bilaterally, without mediators, according to a senior Armenian lawmaker.
“The negotiations were bilateral, the statement doesn’t mention any other side,” said Sargis Khandanyan, the Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Foreign Relations, when asked whether the talks involved mediators.
Asked when the Armenian prisoners will return from Azerbaijan, the MP said it’s a matter of ‘hours or days.’
“According to the statement it must take place in the nearest time. It is a matter of hours or days. If I’m not mistaken, the prisoner return process must take place on the state border of Armenia and Azerbaijan,” he said.
Khandanyan declined to confirm or deny the list issued by Azerbaijan of names of the POWs who are to be released. He said that Armenia cannot release names until the prisoners cross the border.
“I’d avoid mentioning names, first of all because I am unaware of details, but also because this is a highly sensitive topic. I think the names shouldn’t be released until the prisoners cross the state border of Armenia, because, understandably, this can be very difficult for the families of the prisoners,” he said when asked on the authenticity of the list of names of the detainees issued by the Azeri authorities.
He added that the government of Armenia will continue to work to achieve the release of all POWs and other detainees held in Azerbaijan.
“This was a part of the process, and there is certain result regarding the process, and the government of Armenia will continue to carry out diplomatic and legal work, so that all prisoners and other detainees who are in Azerbaijan are released as a result of such a process,” Khandanyan said.
Following the talks between the Office of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia and the Presidential Administration of the Republic of Azerbaijan, an agreement has been reached on taking tangible steps towards building confidence between two countries.
Driven by the values of humanism and as a gesture of goodwill, the Republic of Azerbaijan releases 32 Armenian military servicemen.
In its turn, driven by the values of humanism and as a gesture of goodwill, the Republic of Armenia releases 2 Azerbaijani military servicemen.
As a sign of good gesture, the Republic of Armenia supports the bid of the Republic of Azerbaijan to host the 29th Session of the Conference of Parties (COP29) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, by withdrawing its own candidacy. The Republic of Armenia and the Republic of Azerbaijan do hope that the other countries within the Eastern European Group will also support Azerbaijan’s bid to host. As a sign of good gesture, the Republic of Azerbaijan supports the Armenian candidature for Eastern European Group COP Bureau membership.
The Republic of Armenia and the Republic of Azerbaijan will continue their discussions regarding the implementation of more confidence building measures, effective in the near future and call on the international community to support their efforts that will contribute to building mutual trust between two countries and will positively impact the entire South Caucasus region.