The United States on Friday 'welcomed' the announcement by Armenia and Azerbaijan of the release of two Azerbaijani and thirty-two Armenian detainees, TURAN's Washington correspondent reports.

"This commitment represents an important confidence building measure as the sides work to finalize a peace agreement and normalize relations," State Department Spokesperson Matt Miller said in a statement.

He went on to add, "We commend Azerbaijani President Aliyev and Armenian Prime Minister Pashinyan for their joint efforts to lay the groundwork for a more peaceful and prosperous future for the people of the South Caucasus. The United States will continue to strongly support efforts to reach a durable and dignified peace."

In a joint statement. Armenia and Azerbaijan said Thursday night that they would exchange prisoners of war and work towards normalising their relations.

Both countries had previously signalled a peace agreement could be signed by the end of the year, but peace talks have seen little progress after cancellation of several meetings in Europe and Washington.

However, in a media note on Thursday following Assistant Secretary of James O’Brien's meetings in Baku this week, the State Department reiterated its interest to host the next round of peace negotiations.

O’Brien "had a positive and constructive meeting with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev," the Department said, adding that the two discussed our countries’ deep historical ties and the importance of the bilateral relationship.  

"Assistant Secretary O’Brien told President Aliyev the United States would welcome the upcoming visits of the Azerbaijani Central Bank Governor and Energy Minister to Washington, and that Secretary Blinken looks forward to hosting Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov and Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan in Washington soon for the next round of peace negotiations," reads the media note.

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