Pope Francis Is Concerned About The Deterioration Of Relations Between Armenia And Azerbaijan
Pope Francis expressed his concern about the deterioration of relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan and said that he hopes to overcome the tension as soon as possible. The Pontiff said this during a Sunday sermon, according to the press service of the Holy see.
"I am following with concern the armed clashes in the Caucasus, between Armenia and Azerbaijan. I pray for the families of all those who lost their lives in these incidents. I hope that through the mediation of the international community, through dialogue and with the goodwill of the parties, a solution will be reached that guarantees peace for the sake of the well - being of these beloved peoples," Francis said.
The situation on the border of the two States escalated on July 12. Azerbaijan declared an attempt by the Armenian armed forces to attack the positions of the Republic's army using artillery, while Yerevan called the attempt to break through from the Azerbaijani side the reason for the aggravation. In Baku reported 12 dead soldiers of the Azerbaijani army since Sunday. Yerevan said four soldiers were killed and 10 wounded. On July 17, Baku and Yerevan reported that the situation on the border is relatively calm.
The conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh began in February 1988, when the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous region announced its secession from the Azerbaijani SSR. During the 1992-1994 armed conflict, Azerbaijan lost control of Nagorny Karabakh and seven surrounding areas. Since 1992, negotiations on a peaceful settlement of the conflict have been held within the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group, which is chaired by Russia, the United States, and France.