Armenia returned 4 villages to Azerbaijan

Armenia has agreed to return 4 abandoned border villages to Azerbaijan, which both sides hailed as an important milestone in their pursuit of a peace deal.

"Armenia has agreed to return four villages that have been occupied since the early 1990s," Azeri foreign minister Ayhan Hadjizadeh said in a statement on social media, as quoted by POLITICO.

In turn, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia released a statement that the preliminary agreement was reached during the eighth round of negotiations on the demarcation of the Armenian-Azerbaijani border. Azerbaijan is demanding the return of the villages as a condition for a peace deal after more than three decades of conflict, centered mostly in the Nagorno-Karabakh region. The preliminary agreement includes the villages of Baganis Airum, Asagi Eskipara, Heyrimli and Kizilhajili, according to the statement.

Armenia and Azerbaijan have fought several bloody wars in recent years. /BGNES