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Iran is urging Azerbaijan and Armenia, the sides of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, to prevent a war in the region, said Ali Larijani, speaker of the Iranian parliament.
"We always recommend our partners in Azerbaijan and Armenia to use such solutions that will not lead to a war," Larijani said Apr. 21 in an interview with Mikhail Gusman, first deputy director general of the Russian TASS news agency.
Larijani said that one of the existing mechanisms is the OSCE Minsk Group.
"The OSCE Minsk Group was established at the initiative of Russia in 1992," he said. "It consists of 12 countries. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group are Russia, the US, and France."
"We recommend our Armenian and Azerbaijani friends to prevent a new war in the region, as the consequences will be very painful," he added. "The Iranian Defense Ministry has already contacted the colleagues in Baku and Yerevan, as well as in Moscow."
"Moreover, Azerbaijan and Armenia are neighbors," he said. "Another numerous human loss will cause hatred. It will be very difficult to get rid of hatred in the future."
Larijani also said that everyone needs to put efforts to resolve the issue through politics.
On the night of April 2, 2016, all the frontier positions of Azerbaijan were subjected to heavy fire from the Armenian side, which used large-caliber weapons, mortars and grenade launchers. The armed clashes resulted in deaths and injuries among the Azerbaijani population. Azerbaijan responded with a counter-attack, which led to liberation of several strategic heights and settlements.
Military operations were stopped on the line of contact between Azerbaijani and Armenian armies on Apr. 5 at 12:00 (UTC/GMT + 4 hours) with the consent of the sides, Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry earlier said. Ignoring the agreement, the Armenian side again started violating the ceasefire.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts. The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.
2016.04.21 / 23:14