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 Friday, March 24 2023 14:47
Marianna Mkrtchyan

Department of State makes efforts to address demining issues in  Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone

Department of State makes efforts to address demining issues in  Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone

ArmInfo." We remain deeply concerned about landmines and unexploded ordnance that continue to kill and maim citizens, block economic development and impede the  safe return of displaced communities," Jessica Lewis, ASSISTANT  Secretary of the State Department's Bureau of Political-Military  Affairs, said at a security briefing in Washington on Thursday, Turan  reports.

Asked by TURAN's correspondent about Washington's role in Karabakh  peace process, the Assistant Secretary reiterated the U.S. position  that it "remains committed" to promoting a peaceful, democratic and  prosperous future in the South Caucasus and "we recognize that there  can't be a military solution to the conflict and that the use of  force to resolve disputes is not acceptable."

Speaking about the efforts of the Bureau of Political-Military  Affairs, Lewis recalled that in 2022 the United States allocated $ 2  million for demining in the Nagorno-Karabakh war zone. Another  $500,000 was allocated for the same purposes in November 2021, she  recalled.  

"The work that we do with our international partners and to clean  this up is mission critical for countries to be able to recover and  recuperate and to protect civilians," she added.  When asked about  Washington's interest in participating in peacekeeping operations in  the region, the assistant secretary reminded that her Bureau provides  the training for peacekeepers to carry out their missions. "And I do  think we need to look closely at how we're going to help continue to  be able to do that work." 

She went on to add, "Obviously those are run through the UN and I  want to steer clear of commenting on exactly how the UN will manage  those processes moving forward. But I do think we need to look at  questions of not only Russian support, but Russian equipment that  right now for example I know there are difficulties getting spare  parts for, and things like that, that may affect peacekeepers'  abilities to carry out their peacekeeping work."

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