20 Nov 2020 22:33

Safe conditions provided for int'l humanitarian organizations in Karabakh - Putin

NOVO-OGARYOVO, Moscow region. Nov 20 (Interfax) - Safe conditions have been provided for international humanitarian organizations in Nagorno-Karabakh, and it is important to make sure that the International Committee of the Red Cross's assistance to Karabakh prompts other organizations to follow suit, Russian President Vladimir Putin said.

"All our humanitarian efforts and assistance should benefit the Armenian and Azerbaijani peoples. We sympathize with everyone who has found themselves in trouble," Putin said during an online conference with the Russian peacekeepers in Nagorno-Karabakh.

Putin said he is continually in touch with his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts.

"Both leaders and I have agreed that a Russian interagency delegation representing a number of ministries and other agencies will be sent to Armenia and Azerbaijan in the near future. Its mission will be to consider the most urgent and relevant aspects of the implementation of the November 9 trilateral statement, certainly including humanitarian problems," he said.

"I expect the upcoming consultations to help make significant progress on this track. Mobilization and international assistance are of special significance now. Thanks to our peacekeepers, the foundation for such work has been established," Putin said.

"The safe conditions for the work of employees of international humanitarian organizations have been provided, and the field for joint efforts toward this is very extensive," he said.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) plays the leading role in providing humanitarian aid in the region, he said.

"Its President Peter Maurer visited Moscow two days ago and reaffirmed the organization's willingness to step up its activities in Yerevan, in Baku, and in Stepanakert - certainly, relying on support from Russia and our peacekeepers in this," he said.

It would be important "for representatives of other institutions, such as the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the World Health Organization, the World Food Program, and the UN Mine Action Service, to follow suit," he said.

The UN Development Program should also play its positive role at the later stages, "when we come to grips with post-conflict reconstruction," Putin said.