WASHINGTON, DC — Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan will visit Washington, DC this month where a summit is expected to take place with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, The Hill reports.

The meeting, while occurring amid the annual strategic dialogue between the U.S. and Armenia, is taking on new urgency over efforts to secure a ceasefire and calm weeks of fierce fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan that has killed dozens of civilians, injured hundreds more and displaced tens of thousands.

Varuzhan Nersesyan, Armenia’s Ambassador to United States, said preparations are being made for the foreign minister’s visit ahead of an official announcement expected by Armenia’s Foreign Ministry and the State Department.

“We’re working on the preparation of the foreign minister’s visit to Washington,” Nersesyan said.

In an interview with The Hill, Ambassador Nersesyan said that the U.S. should halt military assistance to Azerbaijan and put more pressure on Turkey to stop its interference in the conflict with Armenia over the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh.

The arrival of Armenia’s foreign minister in the U.S. could signal a greater push by the Trump administration to engage itself in mediation and peace efforts following the quick unraveling of an attempted ceasefire negotiated by Russia on Oct. 10.

The international community has largely regarded the U.S. as absent from efforts to calm tensions between both sides, with little public comment from President Trump on the weeks-long fighting.

The ambassador said he would welcome Trump taking a more active role as a mediator in the Southern Caucasus in implementing a ceasefire and called for the U.S. to exercise more pressure on Turkey, which has put its support behind Azerbaijan, to stay out of the conflict.

“Secretary Pompeo made a comment which we appreciate, where he says that Turkey reinforces Azerbaijan in this war,” said Nersesyan, referring to remarks by the secretary saying Ankara is “increasing the risk” of the fighting by providing firepower and resources to Baku.

“However at this stage, what is needed is a robust action, not only statements but concrete steps,” he added. “First of all, put pressure over Turkey to immediately stop its aggression against Nagorno-Karabakh.”

Varuzhan Nersesyan, Armenia’s Ambassador in Washington, said preparations are being made for the foreign minister’s visit ahead of an official announcement expected by Armenia’s Foreign Ministry and the State Department.

“We’re working on the preparation of the foreign minister’s visit to Washington,” Nersesyan said.

Nersesyan warned that Turkey’s involvement in the conflict could trigger a wider regional global confrontation. Russia, while maintaining relations with both Armenia and Azerbaijan, has a mutual defense pact with Yerevan. The conflict has added another layer of tension between Moscow and Ankara, which are on opposite sides of wars in Syria and Libya.

“What we are hoping and we are expecting is that the [U.S.] administration takes steps to stop Turkey,” Nersesyan said. “Otherwise this conflict can spiral out into a much larger and regional global confrontation. And that is not an exaggeration.”

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