Russian peacekeepers should formally remain in Nagorno-Karabakh until November 2025, the future of this mission will be determined within the framework of the negotiation process, Russian President Vladimir Putin said during a press conference following the CIS summit in Bishkek.
“Formally, our peacekeepers will be there until November 2025, and we, of course, in dialogue with partners will have to determine and resolve the issue of what and how we will do in the near future, but we will decide this during the negotiations,” – he said.
Putin also stressed that the mandate of Russian peacekeepers is limited to monitoring the ceasefire. After Armenia recognized Baku’s sovereignty over Karabakh, it turned out that Russian peacekeepers are already “without any doubt” on Azerbaijani territory, he added.
In addition, the president reiterated that Russia is ready to facilitate negotiations between Yerevan and Baku. A peace treaty between the two countries is possible, Putin is confident. “With good will on both sides, this can all be done,” he believes.
Baku carried out “anti-terrorist measures” in Nagorno-Karabakh on September 19–20. As a result of the conflict, by October 1, 100,514 ethnic Armenians out of 120,000 nominally declared by the NKR authorities left the region, most of them settled in neighboring Armenia. At the same time, representatives of official Baku held several meetings with the delegation of Karabakh Armenians regarding the living conditions of those remaining, whose exact number is not known.
The Russian peacekeeping contingent is located in Karabakh according to the trilateral statement of the heads of state of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia, which led to a ceasefire during the second Karabakh war in November 2020. According to the document, peacekeepers were stationed along the line of contact of the warring forces at the time of the conclusion of the agreement in the region for a period of for five years from the date of conclusion of the agreement with its subsequent extension for the same period, unless Baku and Yerevan refuse this provision.