Foreign Ministers Elmar Mamedyarov and Zohrab Mnatsakanyan and mediators from the OSCE Minsk Group held a video conference on April 21 and issued a joint statement as a result. The sites acknowledged the need to postpone visits and “implementation of previously agreed humanitarian measures,” such as the media exchange organized last November.

The statement further said that “the [French, Russian and U.S.] Co-Chairs underlined the importance of observing the ceasefire strictly and refraining from provocative actions in the current environment and called on the sides to take measures to reduce tensions further.”

Last month, the OSCE suspended its bi-weekly monitoring of the cease-fire line. With the exception of several shootouts in the very north of the cease-fire line, close to Georgia, the Line of Contact has remained largely calm. Through the first quarter of the year, both sides reported a total of six fatalities in hostile fire incidents and at least as many wounded, which represented an increase over first quarter of 2019, when only two fatalities were reported. 

While the calm generally continued on the Karabakh stretch, on the day of the video conference, the Armenian Defense Army reported shooting down an Azerbaijani reconnaissance drone in the south of Artsakh, first such incident since last September. 

Surviving parts of a drone shot down over Karabakh on Apr. 21, 2020. Courtesy NKRMil.am