EU should express clear position on Karabakh conflict – FM (PHOTO)
Baku, Azerbaijan, Apr.8
By Seba Aghayeva - Trend:
The European Union should show a clear position on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, as did other international institutions, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said Apr.8.
The minister made the remarks during the meeting with EU Commissioner for European Neighborhood and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn in Baku.
During the meeting, Mammadyarov briefed the EU commissioner about the current situation in the negotiations on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said Apr.8.
He said that maintaining the status quo in the conflict is inadmissible and added that the withdrawal of Armenian armed forces from Azerbaijan's occupied territories is important.
The settlement of the conflict will create new opportunities for the region's development, according to Mammadyarov.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
The two countries signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Russia, France and the US are currently holding peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the UN Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.
Furthermore, the foreign minister touched upon Azerbaijani-EU relations.
He said Azerbaijan's relations with the majority of EU countries are of strategic nature and the country plans to establish similar relations with the EU in general.
The rule of law is ensured and the process of the consistent development of democracy continues in Azerbaijan, said the minister.
Moreover, during the meeting, the sides noted the importance of Azerbaijan's cooperation with EU in the energy sphere and stressed the significance of the TAP and TANAP projects.
It should be noted that EU commissioner Johannes Hahn is holding meetings with Azerbaijani officials in Baku on Apr.8.
The changes in the European Neighborhood Policy will be discussed during the visit of Hahn to Baku.
Azerbaijan and EU will also discuss the issues of strengthening the cooperation between Azerbaijan and EU, the upcoming summit of member countries of the Eastern Partnership in Riga, touch upon the issue of consultations of the European Union on changing the Neighborhood Policy.
The commissioner's visit will last till Apr.9.
Edited by SI
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