Russia: Russia calls on Armenia and Azerbaijan to cease hostilities – Lavrov

Russia's President along with the Defence and Foreign Ministries called on Armenia and Azerbaijan to immediately cease hostilities in the Nagorno-Karabakh region, stated Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov during a press conference alongside the Moldovan Foreign Minister Andrei Galbur, in Moscow, Monday.
Lavrov said "we expressed our concerns and confirmed the President's call to stop the violation of the ceasefire agreements," adding that Yerevan and Baku both confirmed a wish to de-escalate the situation, saying "the necessary orders were given; nevertheless we still receive messages about outrages."
The Russian minister reiterated that the de-escalation of the situation is an international effort, declaring "together with Baku and Yerevan we continue to struggle for the signals from Moscow, Washington and Paris to be heard."
The Russian diplomat also spoke out against attempts to undermine the role of the OSCE Minsk Group, which has been working for almost a decade to resolve the conflict. "Any move to extend these efforts beyond the Russian-American-French work as the co-chairs [of the OSCE Minsk Group] will be used by those who want either to undermine the regulation process or to complicate it," stated Lavrov.
The hostilities in the region restarted on Friday night, with Armenia and Azerbaijan both blaming each other for the ceasefire violations. According to reports, 18 Armenian and 12 Azerbaijani soldiers have been killed since the conflict resumed. A ceasefire has since been called for by Baku.
The conflict over the area dates back to 1988, when Nagorno-Karabakh, a predominantly ethnic Armenian mountainous region, broke away from the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic.
It declared independence in 1991, triggering a full-scale war which ended only after Russia brokered a ceasefire between the two countries in 1994. Clashes still break out periodically in the region, with the latest thought to be among the most serious since the 1994 truce.
Nagorno-Karabakh is recognised by the United Nations (UN) as being part of Azerbaijan but has been under the control of Armenian military and separatist forces since 1994.