ST. PETERSBURG (Combined Sources) — Armenia’s President Serzh Sarkisian and Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev have met in the Russian city of St. Petersburg for talks aimed at reaching a settlement on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

Russian President Vladimir Putin hosted the June 20 meeting — the second between Aliyev and Sarkisian since a truce was established in early April to halt four days of fighting around Nagorno-Karabakh between Azerbaijan’s military and Armenia forces.

After the talks, the three leaders in a joint statement expressed readiness to normalize the situation along the line of contact and agreed to an increase in the number of monitors in the area from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

“The presidents noted major importance of their regular contacts on the Nagorno-Karabakh problems and agreed to continue them in this format to supplement the work of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs who were invited to the final part of the St. Petersburg meeting,” the document says.

The leaders have “stated that they reached mutual understanding on a number of issues the settlement of which will make it possible to create conditions for progress in the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement.”

“The presidents reiterated their commitment to the agreements reached at the latest Armenian-Azerbaijani summit in Vienna on May 16 that are geared towards stabilization of the situation in the conflict zone and creating of the atmosphere capable of promoting the peace process. For these ends, they agreed, in particular, to increase the number of monitors in the conflict zone. They expressed satisfaction of the observance of the ceasefire along the line of engagement in the recent time,” the presidents said in the statement.

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