YEREVAN — Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan presented Thursday at a regular government meeting Armenia’s approaches to the settlement of the Karabakh conflict, taking into account the tense situation on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border in the Tavush region.

Armenia also needs to review its foreign and security policies in response to Turkey’s increasingly “aggressive” support for Azerbaijan in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the Prime Minister stated.

Pashinyan charged that Ankara has sought to heighten tensions in the conflict zone by blaming Yerevan for this month’s deadly hostilities on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border and promising military aid to Baku.

“The only country that attempted to provoke greater violence, rather than calm the situation down, [during the flare-up] was Turkey,” he said at the start of a weekly cabinet meeting in Yerevan.

“Given that country’s destabilizing and aggressive policy towards a number of neighboring regions and traditional anti-Armenian policy, evidenced by its justification of the [1915] Armenian genocide, Turkey’s stance did not come as a surprise,” he said. “But its increased aggressiveness is creating the need for a certain revision of our policy, including in terms of the scale of our participation in international formats for curbing Turkey’s aggressiveness.”

The prime minister said that Armenia cannot ignore the fact that Azerbaijan is committing military provocations for the second time since 2016 despite of the negotiation process and calls from the OSCE Minsk Group to refrain from exacerbations.

“The unified security system of Armenia and Artsakh must be strengthened. From this point of view, I consider it extremely important to cooperate closely with Artsakh and give this cooperation a new content corresponding to new challenges. Secondly, Artsakh must become a full-fledged party of the negotiations. Third, Azerbaijan must publicly refuse to use force and anti-Armenian rhetoric,” he said.

“The negotiations make sense if Azerbaijan abandons its maximalist approach and is ready to make concessions. There can be no concessions in the issues of unconditional recognition of the right to self-determination of the people of Artsakh, the security of the people of Armenia and NKR,” the prime minister said.

He pointed out that Azerbaijan was shelling peaceful settlements. Therefore, the countries supplying it with weapons must clearly understand that the use of these weapons against civilians is a crime.

“One gets the impression that it is not Azerbaijan that is fighting against the citizens and the Armed Forces of Armenia, but international corporations producing lethal weapons together with their specialists,” the premier said.

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