The Kremlin says US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s “loud announcements” about the latest clashes on the border conflicts between Azerbaijan and Armenia are unlikely to contribute to settling the tension.
The Kremlin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Monday that a "quiet and businesslike approach" to the border conflict between the two countries would bear fruit.
“Anything... done in a quiet and businesslike approach can contribute to the normalization of relations, the stabilization of the situation on the border, all this can be welcomed. Can such high-profile actions and statements really contribute to the normalization of the situation? Let's see.”
On the second day of her three-day visit to Armenia on Sunday, Pelosi, the Speaker of the US House of Representatives, blamed Azerbaijan for igniting the latest episode with Armenia. She said Baku launched an “illegal” and “deadly” attack. “We strongly condemn those attacks -- on behalf of Congress -- which threaten (the) prospects of the much-needed peace agreement,” she said at a press conference in the Armenian capital, Yerevan.
Her provocative comments infuriated Baku, prompting the Azeri Foreign Ministry to respond with anger later in the day. “The unsubstantiated and unfair accusations leveled by Pelosi against Azerbaijan are unacceptable," the ministry said. “Pelosi is known as a pro-Armenian politician.”
“This is a serious blow to the efforts to normalize relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan,” the ministry added, condemning Pelosi’s remarks as “Armenian propaganda.”
The Azeri Foreign Ministry also accused Pelosi of attempting to cater to Armenian-Americans ahead of midterm elections in the United States.
“It is unacceptable to transfer the domestic political intrigues on the US agenda and lobbying interests to the South Caucasus region through Armenia,” it said. “Such unilateral steps and baseless statements serve not to strengthen the fragile peace in the region, but, on the contrary, to escalate tensions.”
The Armenia-Azerbaijan border was tense once again on the night on September 12 over the control of the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh. Both sides have traded blame for the latest deadly episode, which left scores of troops killed on each side. According to the Azeri side, a ceasefire is currently being observed.
The fighting was the most recent flare-up in tensions between the two neighbors since thousands were killed in a 44-day war over the disputed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh that ended in November 2020. The conflict, which claimed over 6,500 lives on both sides, ended with a Russian-brokered ceasefire, but friction deepened.
After the bloody fighting, Azeri troops regained control over swathes of Nagorno-Karabakh, which had been controlled since the 1990s by ethnic Armenians.