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Kocharian Tests Positive For Coronavirus, Unable To Visit Moscow For Karabakh Consultations


Former Armenian President Robert Kocharian (archive photo)

Despite no obstacles from the government Armenia’s former President Robert Kocharian has not been able to leave for Moscow for “discussions with Russian elites” over ways to end the Nagorno-Karabakh war due to testing positive for the novel coronavirus, his office said on Friday.

Earlier today, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian’s spokesperson Mane Gevorkian revealed that still on October 20 the current Armenian leader effectively gave the green light to Kocharian and another former Armenian President Levon Ter-Petrosian to use their ties and political clout in Russia to get concrete proposals for ending hostilities with Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh.

“Stressing that he could not raise objections to any possible step for the benefit of Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh, Prime Minister Pashinian agreed to that proposal,” said Gevorkian, adding that according to her information neither Kocharian nor Ter-Petrosian have made the trip yet.

Kocharian’s office issued a statement on Friday, clarifying that the proposal to travel to Moscow had come from former Karabakh leaders Arkady Ghukasian and Bako Sahakian. But it said that despite supporting the idea, Kocharian could not leave for Moscow immediately due to being confined to country limits as a defendant in a trial who had been released from detention on bail.

“It was only after Ghukasian and Sahakian had a conversation with the prime minister, the court allowed Kocharian to leave the country with an exit deadline of November 7, and his passport was returned to him,” the statement said.

It added that Kocharian, who was due to leave in the following few days, then tested positive for the coronavirus after a mandatory test for entering the Russian Federation. “The test result was positive, which was completely unexpected, since Kocharian did not have any symptoms of the disease,” Kocharian’s office said in the statement, adding that due to this the ex-president’s travel to Moscow has become temporarily impossible and that he is currently in self-isolation.

Meanwhile, Ter-Petrosian’s spokesman Arman Musinian refused to comment immediately on the statement by the prime minister’s spokesperson. “Now our country is in a difficult situation of war. And in order to avoid unnecessary misunderstandings and speculations, we will give a detailed explanation to this issue only after the end of the crisis,” Musinian told ilur.am.

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