In Armenia, Nancy Pelosi condemns ‘illegal’ attacks by Azerbaijan

Updated on Sep 18, 2022 05:08 PM IST

Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict: Nancy Pelosi said her trip to Armenia had particular importance following the "illegal and deadly attacks by Azerbaijan" on Armenia.

Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict: US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi attends a joint news conference in Yerevan, Armenia.(Reuters)
Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict: US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi attends a joint news conference in Yerevan, Armenia.(Reuters)
Reuters |

US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Sunday strongly condemned what she said were "illegal" border attacks by Azerbaijan on Armenia that triggered clashes in which more than 200 people were killed.

Pelosi said her trip to Armenia had particular importance following the "illegal and deadly attacks by Azerbaijan" on Armenia.

"We strongly condemn those attacks," Pelosi said. She said it was clear that the border fighting was triggered by Azeri attacks on Armenia.

Pelosi, who arrived in Yerevan on Saturday for a three-day visit, is the highest-ranking US official to travel to Armenia since the tiny nation gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.

Armenia and Azerbaijan have fought two wars -- in the 1990s and in 2020 -- over the contested region of Nagorno-Karabakh an Armenian-populated enclave of Azerbaijan.

Together with France and Russia, the US co-chairs the Minsk Group of mediators, which had led decades-long peace talks between Baku and Yerevan under the aegis of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

Analysts have said the recent fighting has largely undone Western efforts to bring Baku and Yerevan closer to a peace deal.

The six-weeks war in 2020 claimed the lives of more than 6,500 troops from both sides and ended with a Russian-brokered ceasefire.

Under the deal, Armenia ceded swathes of territory it had controlled for decades, and Moscow deployed about 2,000 Russian peacekeepers to oversee the fragile truce.

Ethnic Armenian separatists in Nagorno-Karabakh broke away from Azerbaijan when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. The ensuing conflict claimed around 30,000 lives.

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