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UN Security Council Again Discusses Karabakh


The United Nations Security Council meets at UN headquarters in New York, February 28, 2020.

The United Nations Security Council again discussed the continuing war over Nagorno-Karabakh late on Monday at a meeting initiated by France, Russia and the United States and, the three world powers trying to end the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict.

Vasily Nebenzya, the Russian ambassador to the UN who chaired the closed-door meeting, said it discussed ways of ensuring the conflicting parties’ compliance with ceasefire agreements.

“It is now necessary to ensure the implementation, this is the most pressing issue because a relevant agreement was reached but not respected,” the TASS news agency quoted Nebenzya as saying. “The main question remains how to ensure a verification of its implementation.”

“This issue was certainly discussed during the consultations, and the council was quite unanimous in its approach,” he told reporters in New York.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said earlier on Monday that Moscow keeps pressing Armenia and Azerbaijan to work out a ceasefire “verification mechanism.” He said the Russian Defense Ministry is also involved in these efforts.

Lavrov suggested last week that such a mechanism would involve the deployment of “military observers” to the conflict zone.

Nebenzya did not exclude that the observers would be deployed by and operate under the aegis of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). “The questions of who will be there and in what capacity remain open and under discussion,” said the Russian diplomat.

The OSCE’s Minsk Group co-headed by Russia, France and the U.S. has long been the main international body trying to broker a solution to the Karabakh conflict. All three co-chair nations are permanent members of the UN Security Council.

The council already discussed the situation in the Karabakh conflict zone on September 29 two days after the outbreak of the war. It called for an immediate end to the fighting.

The fighting in and around Karabakh reportedly continued on Monday night and on Tuesday. The Armenian Defense Ministry said in the morning that Karabakh’s Armenian-backed army is trying to repel a continuing Azerbaijani offensive at a frontline section south of Karabakh.

The Azerbaijani military said, for its part, that Armenian forces shelled its frontline positions overnight.

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