Azerbaijan: Armenia-EU-US meeting deepens regional rifts

Azerbaijan has expressed concerns that the upcoming meeting between Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken will introduce "new dividing lines" in the South Caucasus. Scheduled for early next month in Brussels, this conference, according to Azerbaijan, threatens to foster division rather than facilitate genuine negotiation efforts.

Publication: 27.03.2024 - 12:56
Azerbaijan: Armenia-EU-US meeting deepens regional rifts
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Aykhan Hajizada, spokesperson for Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry, criticized the conference for promoting divisive influence spheres in the region under the guise of diplomacy. He labeled the actions of the EU and the US as "one-sided and biased," accusing them of adopting a "double standard approach." Hajizada highlighted concerns about the conference's lack of transparency and regional inclusivity, asserting it undermines confidence-building and integrity in the region.

The spokesperson also warned that the overtly pro-Armenian stance of Washington and Brussels might delude Armenia into expecting EU and US backing in any future provocations against Baku. "Should such scenarios unfold, the EU and the US would bear responsibility for any resultant destabilization," Hajizada stated. He urged all parties to avoid actions that could derail peace talks and escalate regional tensions.

The backdrop to these remarks is the prolonged tension between Baku and Yerevan, dating back to 1991 over the Karabakh region, internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan but occupied by Armenian forces. The conflict saw a significant shift in the fall of 2020 when Azerbaijan reclaimed much of the territory, leading to a Russian-mediated peace agreement that also paved the way for normalization efforts. Azerbaijan reaffirmed its sovereignty over Karabakh following an "anti-terrorism operation" in September 2023, marking the end of separatist control in the area.

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