Ned Price

Ned Price

The State Department on Friday dismissed Vladimir Putin's interpretation of a prospective "plan" the Russian president claims was proposed by Washington with regards to Azerbaijani-Armenian conflict, TURAN's U.S, correspondent reports.

"There continues to be misinformation and, probably more accurately, disinformation emanating from certain corners, including from Moscow, when it comes to our intentions vis-à-vis Armenia and Azerbaijan," State Department's spokesperson Ned Price told a daily press briefing in response to TURAN's questions.

Putin on Wednesday claimed that Washington had proposed a "plan" recognizing Azerbaijan's sovereignty over the entire Nagorno-Karabakh region, adding that Russia "could help Armenia negotiate a better deal" if Yerevan wanted to, and "was ready" to make concessions.

Price reminded that the United States is a partner to both Armenia and Azerbaijan: "We have been a partner to both of these countries over the course of decades."

According to him, there is "no greater supporter" than the United States for the sovereignty and the independence of the countries of the South Caucasus, including Armenia and Azerbaijan.

"The restoration of Armenia, Azerbaijan’s independence in 1991 from the Soviet Union – it was a seminal event that guaranteed each of these countries the right to pursue their own foreign policy interests, to pursue their own interests independent of Moscow or any other country around the world."

Putin’s comments came as he is planning to host the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan in Sochi next Monday.

Washington, in its turn, says it has encouraged and "been clear with" Armenia and Azerbaijan that they should meet in whatever format is most useful to them. "We do believe in the utility of direct dialogue to resolving issues and to reaching that lasting peace," Price said.

According to him, when the U.S. engages with Armenia and Azerbaijan, "we are doing so with one purpose in mind and one purpose only, and that is to put an end to the violence and to put these countries on the path to a lasting and comprehensive peace."

Asked by TURAN about upcoming trilateral talks in Sochi, Price said, it is up to Armenia and Azerbaijan to decide the approach they will take to these upcoming talks.

Price went on to add, "I think the world knows of Russia’s history when it comes to its neighbors and its neighborhood. Russia’s 2008 invasion of Georgia and it’s ongoing brutal invasion of Ukraine show that Moscow has little respect for its neighbors’ sovereignty, and it’s hardly a reliable, long-term partner. We think that is in stark contrast to the United States"

"And again, our only intent is to help these countries achieve for themselves an end to the violence and a lasting and a comprehensive peace that the people of Armenia and Azerbaijan so desperately want," Price concluded.

Alex Raufoglu

Washington D.C.

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