March 21, 2023 - 14:41 AMT
Diplomacy is the only way to peace in South Caucasus – Blinken

Diplomacy is the only way to peace in the South Caucasus, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said after speaking to Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on Monday, March 20.

According to a short statement he shared on social media, Blinken offered continued U.S. assistance in facilitating bilateral peace discussions with Azerbaijan.

Principal Deputy Spokesperson for the Department of state, Vedant Patel, said in another statement that Secretary Blinken thanked Prime Minister Pashinyan for Armenia’s continued commitment to peace and encouraged concrete steps forward in finding solutions to outstanding issues.

“He reiterated U.S. support for direct talks and diplomacy to support a lasting and sustainable peace in the South Caucasus and stressed that there is no military solution,” Patel said.

Since December 12, the sole road connecting Nagorno Karabakh to Armenia - the Lachin Corridor - has been blocked by self-described Azerbaijani environmentalists. Karabakh residents have reported food and fuel shortages, while hospital patients don't have access to essential medicines, with only a handful allowed transfer to facilities in Armenia proper.