The European Azerbaijan Society (TEAS) welcomed a statement from Baroness Catherine Ashton, High Representative of the European Union (EU) for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy regarding the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh.
Baroness Ashton said that the EU “does not recognise the constitutional and legal framework” in which `presidential elections` are taking place today in Nagorno-Karabakh and commented that they “should not prejudice the determination of the future status of Nagorno-Karabakh.” She urged that greater efforts should be exerted to find a negotiated solution and underlined “the EU`s readiness to provide further support to efforts in this direction.”
Leon Cook, Director of Communications, TEAS, welcomed “this important statement of the EU`s position”, which acknowledges that the occupied region is internationally recognised Azerbaijani territory, and the increased attention that Baroness Ashton and the EU institutions have paid to the conflict in recent months. He urged the redoubling of efforts by the EU to help solve a conflict that threatens regional stability, adding “we remain committed to co-operating constructively with the European institutions in order to achieve this goal.”
He noted Baroness Ashton`s support for the efforts of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs, but said: “Unfortunately, the OSCE Minsk Group has not yet achieved any success in its efforts towards settlement of the conflict, which is continuing to destabilise the whole region. We believe strongly that peaceful conflict resolution is the only guarantee for the economic and social stability of the South Caucasus.”
Mr Cook said that today`s EU statement was in line with the unequivocal condemnation by the EU of all previous `elections` in occupied Nagorno-Karabakh. He said that four outstanding United Nations Security Council resolutions have stipulated that Armenian troops should leave Nagorno-Karabakh and the seven surrounding districts, which have remained occupied for almost 20 years.