Thursday, May 23, 2024
 
 

EU welcomes Azerbaijan-Armenia peace treaty talks in Almaty

NE GLOBAL/KOSTIS GEROPOULOS
A destroyed building in Aghdam, Azerbaijan, May 3, 2024.

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The European Union has welcomed the agreement between Azerbaijan and Armenia to hold talks at the foreign ministers’ level to finalize negotiations for a peace treaty between the two states in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

“The EU supports all efforts aimed at making progress in the normalisation process between Armenia and Azerbaijan, including the announced meeting between Foreign Ministers in Almaty,” Peter Stano, EU Lead Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, told NE Global on May 3.

During his official visit to Yerevan in April, Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev called for the establishment of a long-term peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan and expressed Kazakhstan’s readiness to assist in facilitating negotiations on a peace treaty by providing a respective platform.

Following Kazakhstan’s proposal, Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev informed U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken about the planned meeting in Almaty during a phone call on April 28. Recalling that Azerbaijan was the initiator of the peace treaty and its underlying five principles, Aliyev stressed that Azerbaijan would spare no efforts to advance the peace agenda, the Azeri president’s office said in a statement. During the telephone conversation, Blinken and Aliyev hailed the cooperation between the Azerbaijani and U.S. delegations within the COP29 process.

All eyes are on Azerbaijan as the country gears up to host the UN climate conference in November.

“It is time to take decisive steps towards a sustainable and lasting peace. Azerbaijan should seize the momentum of COP29 to come with a constructive agenda towards peace with Armenia,” Stano told NE Global. “The 19 April agreement to start the delimitation process based on the 1991 Almaty Declaration and other documents is a positive development, and we welcome the steps already taken,” he added.

“The EU remains fully committed to facilitating the dialogue between Armenia and Azerbaijan, including through the resumption of leaders’ meetings in Brussels,” the lead EU spokesman said.

View of Almaty. Photo: Gov.kz

Holding peace talks in Almaty is symbolic. The former southern capital was a venue for the signing of the historic Alma-Ata Declaration in December 1991, a document that laid the foundation for independent development of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries and endorsed the principles of determining interstate borders.

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