EU urges Azerbaijan, Armenia to comply with peace deal
The European Union on Thursday called on Azerbaijan and Armenia to implement the cease-fire agreement which is intended to settle the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Daily Sabah reports.
The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, spoke separately by phone with the foreign ministers of the two countries, according to a statement by his office.
Borrell, who is also the vice president of the European Commission, "expressed the hope that the cessation of hostilities will enable efforts toward a lasting peaceful resolution of the conflict and will prevent further human suffering" in both calls, it said.
"He highlighted that the EU stands ready to provide further humanitarian assistance to address the needs of the civilian populations affected by the conflict," the statement said.
"First and foremost, the cease-fire must be fully respected and implemented by both sides," Borrell said, adding the deal "can constitute a first step toward a negotiated, comprehensive and sustainable settlement of the conflict."
He also stressed the EU's commitment to continue to support the Minsk Group co-chairs-led format and noted that the bloc is ready to contribute to the group's efforts to establish lasting peace. The Minsk Group was set up by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).
"The High Representative/Vice-President looked forward to remaining in contact with both ministers in the coming weeks, ahead of the upcoming EU-Armenia Partnership Council and EU-Azerbaijan Cooperation Council," the statement said.