The United States welcomes the release by Azerbaijan of 15 Armenian detainees and their return to their families in Armenia. We also welcome Armenia’s decision to provide Azerbaijan with important information that will facilitate humanitarian demining and avoid future casualties. We are grateful to Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili and the Government of Georgia for the essential role Georgia played in facilitating these steps, which bring the people of the region closer to the peaceful and prosperous future they deserve.
The United States is pleased to support these steps and hopes they will lay the groundwork for additional cooperation. We continue to call for the return of all detainees and stand ready to assist the countries of the region in their efforts to continue cooperation and resolve outstanding issues between them. We also continue to urge Armenia and Azerbaijan to reengage in substantive negotiations under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs to negotiate a comprehensive political settlement to the conflict.