Aliyev, Pashinian to meet in Brussels to de-escalate tensions

TEHRAN, Nov. 20 (MNA) – Azerbaijani and Armenian leaders have agreed to meet in Brussels next month to de-escalate tensions amid repeated border clashes, the European Union said Friday.

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian "agreed to meet in Brussels to discuss the regional situation and ways of overcoming tensions for a prosperous and stable South Caucasus, which the EU supports," read a statement, Daily Sabah reported.

The breakthrough came after Charles Michel, president of the European Council, spoke to the duo over the phone on Friday "in follow up to discussions earlier this week on the situation in the region and in the context of preparations of the Eastern Partnership (EaP) Summit."

Michel will host Aliyev and Pashinian "for a meeting in Brussels in the margins of the EaP Summit" that will be held on Dec. 15, the statement said.

"The Armenian and Azerbaijani leaders have also agreed to establish a direct communication line, at the level of respective Ministers of Defense, to serve as an incident prevention mechanism," it added.

They have had tense relations since 1991 when Armenia occupied Karabakh and seven adjacent regions.

They were embroiled in a 44-day conflict over the region last year from September to Nov. 10, when the fighting ended with an agreement brokered by Russia.

ZZ/PR

News Code 180862

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