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Iran welcomes ceasefire agreement between Azerbaijan, Armenia-backed separatists

Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kan'ani

The Foreign Ministry has welcomed recent agreement by Azerbaijan and Armenian-backed separatists to a Russia-proposed ceasefire towards prevention of fresh hostilities in the Karabakh region.

On Tuesday, Azerbaijan launched a military operation in the region, accusing the Armenian-backed forces there of "systematic" shelling, "reconnaissance activities," fortification of defensive positions, and "high-level of combat readiness."

Later, however, the separatist Armenian forces reported that mediation by the command of the Russian peacekeeping contingent stationed in the region had resulted in both sides' agreeing to the truce.

The two sides also said that talks on reintegration of the breakaway region into the rest of Azerbaijan, which is internationally recognized as having sovereignty over the territory, would be held in the Azeri city of Yevlakh on Thursday.

Speaking on Wednesday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kan'ani expressed delight on the part of the Islamic Republic over emergence of the agreement, urging that the two sides focus on resolving their dispute based on "dialog and peaceful mechanisms" within the framework on Azerbaijan's territorial integrity.

War brings along no result other than ruination and spreading hatred and endangers the region's stability and security, he said.

Hailing the agreement, the spokesperson said there existed no more reason for prolongation of hostilities in the region, and hoped that the region would not witness anymore warfare.

"The Islamic Republic demands complete respect for the territorial integrity and recognized international borders of the regional countries, and is of the opinion that the rights and security of the residents of Karabakh should be provided within the same framework," Kan'ani stated.

He voiced Tehran's readiness to contribute to relevant sustainable peace processes, and asserted that intervention by third parties in the region would only complicate existing issues and jeopardizes standing agreements.

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