US, Russia, France urge ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh

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Top diplomats of the United States, Russia and France on Monday called for an immediate ceasefire between conflicting parties in the Nagorno-Karabakh region.

In a joint statement issued by the U.S. State Department, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his Russian and French counterparts, representing the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group Co-Chairs countries, condemned the "unprecedented and dangerous escalation of violence in and outside of the Nagorno-Karabakh zone."

"The Ministers stress unconditionally that recent attacks allegedly targeting civilian centers - both along the Line of Contact and on the territories of Azerbaijan and Armenia outside the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone - and the disproportionate nature of such attacks constitute an unacceptable threat to the stability of the region," it said.

"The Ministers call once again upon the conflicting parties to accept an immediate and unconditional ceasefire," according to the joint statement.

The Co-Chairing countries would "firmly continue to advance their engagement with the sides, and urge them to commit now to resuming the settlement process on the basis of existing core principles and relevant international documents well-known by both parties," it added.

Battles are still going on along the contact line of the Nagorno-Karabakh region, according to both sides.

Armenia and Azerbaijan have been at loggerheads over the mountainous region of Nagorno-Karabakh since 1988. Peace talks have been held since 1994 when a ceasefire was reached, but there have been occasional minor clashes. 

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