EU announces mission to Armenia along the border with Azerbaijan
The European Union will send a "civilian mission" to Armenia along the border with Azerbaijan to "build confidence" between the two countries and help delineate the borders. This was announced after a quadripartite meeting with France in Prague.
In September, at least 286 people were killed in clashes between Armenia and Azerbaijan, the worst fighting between the two Caucasus neighbours since their war in 2020. The dispute centres on the fate of Nagorno-Karabakh, an Armenian-populated enclave in Azerbaijan, but also on the demarcation of the two countries' borders. Azerbaijan accuses Armenia of provocation. Armenia denies this. Armania who in previous conflicts was backed by Russia, now finds itself in a weak spot.
In previous conflicts Russia served as mediator but now that Russia has its hands full in Ukraine, Azerbaijan took its chance with a new attack. With the relative absence of Russia, the EU now takes the oppertunity to gain more influence in the region.
"The mission will start in October for a maximum of two months. The aim of the mission is to build confidence and, through its reports, to contribute to the border demarcation commissions," said a joint statement issued after talks between Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, French head of state Emmanuel Macron and European Council President Charles Michel.
© BELGA PHOTO HANS LUCAS - Nikol Pasjinian, Armenia s president, left, speaks with Emmanuel Macron, France s president, following a group photo during a meeting of the European Political Community at Prague castle. 2022/10/06