Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev said Monday that Baku agreed with Armenia on the opening of the Zangezur corridor, including the construction of both railways and highways.
In a statement, Azerbaijan’s Presidency said Aliyev spoke over the phone with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and updated him on a trilateral meeting between himself, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and European Council President Charles Michel in Brussels on Sunday.
“The president of Azerbaijan touched on the preparation of a peace agreement between Armenia and Azerbaijan, the presentation by Azerbaijan of five principles based on international law, the normalization of relations between the two countries, the opening of transport corridors, and the delimitation of borders discussed during the meeting,” the statement added.
“Aliyev gave a positive assessment to the results of the trilateral meeting,” it added.
According to the statement, the Azerbaijani president also noted that an order had been issued earlier Monday “to establish a state commission on the delimitation of the state border between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Armenia.”
For his part, Erdogan thanked Aliyev “for the information about the trilateral meeting and gave a positive assessment to the results achieved at the meeting.”
The two leaders also “stressed the importance of achieving peace in the region as soon as possible.”
Michel said the first meeting of the joint border commissions of Azerbaijan and Armenia will take place soon.
“Today I hosted President Aliyev of Azerbaijan and Prime Minister Pashinyan of Armenia again. This was our third discussion in this format. We focused on the situation in the South Caucasus and the development of EU relations with both countries as well as the broader region,” he said in a statement issued after their meeting Sunday.
Zangezur was part of Azerbaijan, but in the 1920s, the Soviets gave the region to Armenia. After this move, Azerbaijan lost its link with Nakhchivan.
Azerbaijan has focused on projects in the Zangezur corridor which will include motorways and rail lines.
Azerbaijan and Russia will negotiate for the construction of a 43-kilometer (26.7-mile) railway in the region. Russia has railway properties in Armenia.
Some parts of the railway between Azerbaijan and Nakhchivan, which was destroyed during the occupied period, will be repaired.
Following the completion of the railway, Azerbaijan will be able to reach Iran, Armenia and Nakhchivan uninterruptedly by train.
The railway will also link Turkiye with Russia through Azerbaijan.
Relations between the two former Soviet countries have been tense since 1991, when the Armenian military occupied Nagorno-Karabakh, a territory internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, and seven adjacent regions.
New clashes erupted in September 2020, and the 44-day conflict saw Azerbaijan liberate several cities and over 300 settlements and villages that were occupied by Armenia for almost 30 years.
A tripartite agreement was brokered by Russia to bring an end to the war in November 2020.
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