By Abdul Kerimkhanov
The French envoy has been summoned to the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry over the signing of another illegal document between a French official and representatives of Azerbaijan’s separatist Nagorno-Karabakh region.
On October 28, Deputy Foreign Minister Khalaf Khalafov handed over Azerbaijan’s protest note to French Ambassador Zacharie Gross. Khalafov conveyed Azerbaijan’s concerns over the signing of a joint declaration between the head of the Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes Regional Council of France Laurent Wauquiez with representatives of Nagorno-Karabakh, Azerbaijan’s region that is under military occupation of Armenia.
As it was mentioned in the note, the calls reflected in the “declaration” undermine the negotiation process for the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and serves to supporting Armenia’s attempts to the change the format of negotiations.
"Signing of such a ‘joint declaration’ against the background of termination by the administrative courts of the France a number of similar illegal ‘agreements’ between municipal and regional authorities of France and the ‘authorities’ in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan, takes place, in particular, as a result of provocative efforts by the Armenian lobby in France," says the message published in the ministry’s official website.
As was noted, the continuation of signing such illegal “documents” by the local and regional authorities in France, which is one of the leading EU members and the OSCE Minsk Group co-chair, would overshadow the impartial meditative role of this country and set a bad example for other EU member-states, the ministry said.
The ministry reminded that such documents contradict the national legislation of Azerbaijan and France, especially the Article 73 of the Constitution of France, the provisions of the “General Code of Territorial Unites” and circular letter signed by the Ministers of Internal Affairs, and Europe and Foreign Affairs of France of May 24, 2018.
In turn, Gross said such statements by local and municipal French authorities do not have any legal force and do not reflect the position of the French government. He underlined that France's position on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement is principled and remains unchanged.
Gross stressed that the French government didn’t support the program of Wauquiez’s visit to Yerevan, and his meeting with a representative of the illegal entity took place after the official part of the visit was completed. In addition, French ambassador to Armenia didn’t attend this meeting.
Earlier, the administrative Court of Lyon city of France decided to abolish the illegal treaty signed between the commune of Villeurbanne of France and Azerbaijan’s occupied Shusha city on October 17, 2019.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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