The joint monitoring centre should become active as soon as possible as part of the steps taken to solve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Turkish President Erdogan tells his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.
Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has told his Russian counterpart via telephone that he expects a joint monitoring centre that will be established in Nagorno-Karabakh to 'soon' begin operations.
The discussion came as the Azerbaijani army entered the Kalbajar region following 27 years of Armenian occupation.
Erdogan told Vladimir Putin the centre should become active as soon as possible “as part of the steps taken to solve Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and bring lasting stability to the region,” Turkey’s Communications Directorate said in a statement.
Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a Russia-brokered agreement on Nov. 10 to end fighting and work toward a comprehensive solution.
Turkey and Russia have since signed a memorandum of understanding to set up the joint center to monitor the peace deal. It will be established on Azerbaijani territories liberated from Armenia's occupation.
Need for lasting solution
Erdogan noted that during the implementation process, “the Armenian side should not be allowed to make the lasting solution difficult and avoid its responsibilities under the [ceasefire] deal,” as he highlighted Azerbaijan’s sensitivity of the return of all of its territory.
The two leaders also discussed ways to boost bilateral trade volume and ties, and developments in Nagorno-Karabakh, Syria and Libya, according to the statement.
Erdogan said that it was not possible to understand criticisms by the other Minsk Group co-chairs regarding peace efforts.
It also said that the Turkish leader stressed the need for swift and concrete steps to end the war in Syria and voiced belief in the continuation of Turkey-Russia cooperation in political and military talks to protect Libya’s unity and integrity.
Kalbajar take over
Meanwhile, the Azerbaijani army has entered the Kalbajar region, the country's Defence Ministry announced early on Wednesday.
According to the trilateral statement signed by the presidents of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Russian Federation and the prime minister of the Republic of Armenia, units of the Azerbaijan Army entered the Kalbajar region on Nov. 25, the ministry said.
When new clashes erupted on Sept. 27, the Armenian army launched attacks on civilians and Azerbaijani forces and violated humanitarian ceasefire agreements.
During the 44-day conflict, Azerbaijan liberated several cities and nearly 300 settlements and villages from Armenian occupation.