Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (Russian Foreign Ministry Press Office, October 23, 2020)

Families Want Answers on Missing Soldiers, Lavrov Says Delays not Intentional

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YEREVAN (Armenpress) — The family members of the troops who are missing in action in the Second Nagorno Karabakh War that ended on November 10 are rallying outside the Defense Ministry headquarters demanding a meeting with Defense Minister Vagharshak Harutyunyan.

The parents of the missing soldiers were earlier demonstrating outside a military base in Vagharshapat, demanding authorities to launch search operations in Zangelan. They said they don’t understand why search operations haven’t been conducted there so far and why the process is being delayed. The Chief of Staff of the Vagharshapat military base Kamo Malkhasyan had told them that the search operations would start as soon as November 2.

The families of the missing troops had earlier demonstrated outside the Russian embassy, asking Moscow to assist in the process. An embassy staffer had told them they would make every effort to help.

However, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov Moscow said on December 1 that he doesn’t see a deliberate delay in the exchange process of the bodies of those killed in Karabakh and the prisoners of war, said at the online session of the CSTO Council of Foreign Ministers, RIA Novosti reported.

“It’s difficult to say that a deliberate action is taken to prolong that process. We do not see it, but it’s a fact that there are objective difficulties, but I hope they will be solved quickly,” Lavrov said.

He added that the geography of the territory and how the hostilities have developed make it difficult to quickly solve the issue, especially when there are no concrete lists of missing persons.

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