The EU-Armenia Friendship Group in the European Parliament issued the following statement on Azerbaijan’s aggression against the Nagorno-Karabagh Republic (NKR/Artsakh).
The bloody incidents that erupted along the frontiers of Azerbaijan and Nagorno-Karabagh on April 2 constitute developments that can lead to a wider conflict and blow up the Caucasus region.
It is obvious that the escalation of the crisis puts stability and peace at high risk. The EU and the international community in general bear their own responsibility since, for many years, they underestimated how dangerous the dormant conflict in Nagorno-Karabagh is. Therefore, the EU should take initiatives and diplomatic actions with the aim of mobilizing the international community and thus prevent a further escalation of the crisis.
The current developments—with more than 36 soldiers and civilians from both sides having lost their lives—come to prove the need for a comprehensive solution based on the right to self-determination. If the international community and particularly the EU do not intensify their efforts towards a democratic solution, a new catastrophic war will come.
The Azerbaijani government should stop violating the ceasefire agreement through provocative military actions, which become a boomerang, not only for its own citizens, but also for the stability and peace within the wider Caucasus region.
The lack of EU strategy in the Caucasus region is offering Russia the advantage of having the initiating moves and the diplomatic upper hand. The European Parliament cannot simply watch the parties involved play with fire. Therefore, it should ask the High Representative of the EU Foreign Affairs and Security Policy to play a constructive and active role, and thereby avert the escalation of the crisis.
The EU, the U.N., and the Great Powers, through the efforts of the [Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe/OSCE] Minsk Group co-chairs, should take such measures in order to consolidate stability and peace among the Azerbaijani and Armenian peoples, regardless of whether they are inhabitants of the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Azerbaijan, or of Nagorno-Karabagh. The settlement of the conflict should be in line with the right to self-determination. This is the only fair, democratic, and realistic approach that can lead to a viable settlement of the conflict.
The EU-Armenia Friendship Group was established in the European Parliament in Brussels in 2013. The group came into being through the initiative of the Mission of Armenia to the European Union and Member of European Parliament (MEP) for Cyprus Dr. Eleni Theocharous, who presides over the group. The vice presidents are Dr. Charles Tannock, UK Conservative MEP for London; Michele Rivassi, French Green MEP for the southeast of France; Frank Engel, a Christian Democrat representing Luxembourg; and Mitro Repo, a Socialist MEP representing Finland. The group has a total of 34 members of the European Parliament.
Source: Armenian Weekly Mid-West