EU ready to support Azerbaijan-Armenia border de-escalation, delimitation
By Ayya Lmahamad
A spokesperson for the EU foreign affairs and security policy Peter Stano has said that the EU is ready to support Azerbaijan-Armenia border de-escalation and delimitation.
He made remarks in a statement on the occasion of the first anniversary of the cessation of hostilities in and around Nagorno Karabakh following the ceasefire agreement signed by Armenia and Azerbaijan on November 10.
“The EU is also ready to support border de-escalation and delimitation by providing technical assistance, as needed by the sides, and encourages connectivity and the reopening of economic cooperation in the South Caucasus,” the statement read.
He stated that the EU regrets the loss of life inflicted during the hostilities and extends its condolences to the families of those who were killed or injured. Stano emphasized that while hostilities have ceased, many pending issues still need to be addressed in order to move towards a negotiated, comprehensive and sustainable settlement.
“We call in particular for the strict respect for the ceasefire, the immediate release of all remaining prisoners, full cooperation on demining, and the de-escalation of tensions in border areas,” the statement stresses.
The spokesperson underlined that the EU remains committed to promoting a peaceful and prosperous South Caucasus and it is actively engaged in contributing to peace-building and post-conflict rehabilitation.
“It has played an important role in the release of prisoners and the handing-over of minefield maps. The EU has also supported people affected by the conflict with more than €17 million in humanitarian assistance, including for demining and early recovery,” the statement said.
Peter Stano also stressed that a comprehensive settlement is necessary to put an end to more than three decades of conflict and suffering.
“To achieve this goal, the EU will continue to be in active contact with relevant international partners, particularly the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs, and fully supports them in carrying out their mandate by working with Armenia and Azerbaijan on a comprehensive solution to all outstanding issues,” the statement reads.
A Moscow-brokered ceasefire deal that Baku and Yerevan signed on November 10, 2020, brought an end to six weeks of fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan. The Azerbaijani army declared a victory against the Armenian troops. The signed agreement obliged Armenia to withdraw its troops from the Azerbaijani lands that it occupied in the early 1990s.
The peace agreement stipulated the return of Azerbaijan's Armenian-occupied Kalbajar, Aghdam and Lachin regions and urged Armenia to withdraw its troops from the Azerbaijani lands. Before the signing of the deal, the Azerbaijani army had liberated around 300 villages, settlements, city centers, and historic Shusha city.
Ayya Lmahamad is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @AyyaLmahamad
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