YEREVAN (Azatutyun) — Armenia unequivocally recognizes Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity and is ready to sign a relevant peace treaty with Baku, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said on Tuesday, April 18.
“The peace treaty between Armenia and Azerbaijan will become realistic if the two countries recognize clearly, without ambiguities and pitfalls, each other’s territorial integrity and undertake not to ever submit territorial claims to each other,” Pashinyan told the Armenian parliament.
“I now want to reaffirm that Armenia fully recognizes the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and we expect Azerbaijan to do the same by recognizing the entire territory of the Armenian [Soviet Socialist Republic] as the [modern-day] Republic of Armenia,” he said.
Pashinyan already vowed such recognition in a joint statement with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, French President Emmanuel Macron and European Union chief Charles Michel issued after their meeting held in Prague last October. The statement upheld a 1991 declaration in which Armenia and other newly independent Soviet republics recognized each other’s Soviet-era borders.
This was due to be at the heart of an Armenian-Azerbaijani peace treaty promoted by the West. Pashinyan publicly backed such a deal ahead of the Prague summit, stoking Armenian opposition claims that he is ready to help Baku regain full control over Nagorno-Karabakh.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov likewise said in December that Pashinyan effectively recognized Azerbaijani sovereignty over Karabakh in Prague. Lavrov said the Armenian leader thus all but precluded a different peace deal favored by Moscow. It would indefinitely delay an agreement on Karabakh’s status.