The US will host the Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign ministers later this week amid raging conflict over a breakaway region, according to a report published Monday.
On Friday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will first meet with Jeyhun Bayramov, Baku's top diplomat, before also sitting down with Armenian Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan, according to documents reviewed by the Politico news website.
It is unclear if a trilateral meeting is also being planned. Elin Suleymanov, Azerbaijan's ambassador to the US, did not rule out a potential three-way meeting when asked by Politico.
“We want a substantive conversation,” he said.
The State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the reported meetings.
Fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, also called Upper Karabakh, began Sept. 27. Hundreds of people have died in the ensuing conflict.
Relations between the two former Soviet republics have been tense since 1991 when the Armenian military occupied the region, an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan.
Four UN Security Council and two UN General Assembly resolutions demand the withdrawal of occupying forces.
The OSCE Minsk Group -- co-chaired by France, Russia, and the US -- was formed in 1992 to find a peaceful solution to the conflict, but to no avail. A cease-fire, however, was agreed to in 1994.
Iran issues warning over Nagorno-Karabakh stray fire
Iran said Monday that the security of its citizens was a “red line”, after stray missiles hit an Iranian district as a result of the ongoing conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan.
“Iran will respond to any aggression even the unintentional ones,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said in statements cited by the official IRNA news agency.
He said the Iranian armed forces have already sent necessary warnings to opposing sides in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Last week, ten missiles landed in two villages in the Khudaferin district in Iran’s East Azerbaijan province, south of the Armenian-Azerbaijani border, injuring a civilian.
The spokesman said Tehran warned Armenia and Azerbaijan following the incident. “Next time, Iran would not remain indifferent,” he warned.
Upper Karabakh conflict
Relations between the two former Soviet republics have been tense since 1991 when the Armenian military occupied Upper Karabakh, or Nagorno-Karabakh, an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan.
Some 20% of Azerbaijan's territory has remained under illegal Armenian occupation for nearly three decades.
The OSCE Minsk Group – co-chaired by France, Russia, and the US – was formed in 1992 to find a peaceful solution to the conflict, but to no avail. A cease-fire, however, was agreed to in 1994.
Multiple UN resolutions, as well as international organizations, demand the withdrawal of the occupying forces.
World powers, including Russia, France, and the US, have urged a new cease-fire. Turkey, meanwhile, has supported Baku's right to self-defense and demanded the withdrawal of Armenia's occupying forces.
Turkey: Syrian tribal leaders blast PKK, Armenia
Fifty Syrian tribal leaders on Monday condemned the YPG/PKK terror group, as well as Armenia in its conflict with its neighboring Azerbaijan.
Gathering in southeastern Turkey, the leaders who hailed from different regions across Syria expressed in a joint statement their gratitude to Turkey for providing humanitarian aid since the beginning of the Syrian Civil War.
One of the participants, Hassan Dugaym, read the statement following the meeting in the Karakopru district of Sanliurfa province.
"Of course, things will be back on track in Syria one day. Terrorist organizations supported by the West now take part in Armenia's attack on Azerbaijan. Our Muslim brothers and sisters in Azerbaijan pass through tough times as a result of the Armenian attacks. However, oppressed peoples will prevail eventually," said Dugaym.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the US and EU -- has been responsible for the deaths of nearly 40,000 people, including women, children and infants. The YPG is the PKK's branch in Syria, just across Turkey's southern border.
Relations between the two former Soviet republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan have been tense since 1991, when the Armenian military occupied Upper Karabakh, an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan. Fighting re-started on Sept. 27 when Armenian forces targeted Azerbaijani civilian settlements and military positions, leading to casualties.
Following the meeting, some other tribal leaders also expressed their reactions in brief addresses.