Support The Moscow Times!

Russia Voices Concern Over Violence in Nagorno-Karabakh

Russia's Foreign Ministry has expressed "serious concern" in light of a recent flare-up of violence in the disputed Armenian enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh in Azerbaijan.

"We see the events of recent days as serious violations of a cease-fire agreement and of declared intentions to achieve regulation through political means," spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a statement on Saturday.

"We take the position that any further escalation is unacceptable," it said.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) issued a statement on Saturday warning against further escalation.

"Retaliation and further violence will only make it more difficult to continue efforts to bring about a lasting peace," the OSCE head and the co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk group said in a statement on Saturday.

The clashes have already claimed at least 15 lives in an area that has been the site of a frozen conflict even since a cease-fire was reached 20 years ago following a war that claimed 30,000 lives.

Azerbaijan and Armenia have repeatedly accused each other of escalating the situation.

Nagorno-Karabakh, which has a mostly Armenian population, runs its own affairs, but enjoys significant military and financial support from Armenia.

Russia, France and the U.S. spearheaded international efforts to reach a permanent settlement of the conflict, so far unsuccessfully. In September, Armenia decided to join the Russia-led Customs Union.

Material from Reuters was used in this report.

See also:

Lavrov and Kerry Agree Swift Ceasefire Needed in East Ukraine

Read more

We need your help now more than ever.

Independent media outlets and journalists in Russia are being increasingly targeted with “foreign agent” and “undesirable” labels, threatening the existence of the free press day by day.

Your donation to The Moscow Times directly supports the last independent English-language news source within Russia.