German International Minister Annalena Baerbock has urged Armenia and Azerbaijan to return to the negotiating desk and search a political resolution to their decades-old battle over Nagorno-Karabakh.
“There isn’t any different approach for long-term peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan than the negotiation desk,” Baerbock stated on November 3 throughout a go to to Yerevan.
Mediation efforts led by European Council President Charles Michel “are a bridge that may present the quickest approach to peace,” Baerbock stated after talks with Armenian International Minister Ararat Mirzoyan.
Yerevan and Baku have made progress on the varied issues, together with demarcation, she stated, and that has “raised hope you could come to a peaceable resolution.”
Mirzoyan acknowledged Germany’s efforts to realize peace within the area but additionally stated Azerbaijan had damaged its promise to not interact in hostilities.
“Armenia has the desire to take the trail of peace within the area,” he stated, however he additionally famous humanitarian issues, Armenian prisoners of warfare, and the necessity to acknowledge the territorial sovereignty of each international locations.
Baerbock is within the Caucasus for a two-day go to that comes six weeks after a lightning offensive by Azerbaijani forces retook the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh following many years wherein Yerevan-backed ethnic Armenians managed the Azerbaijani territory.
Greater than 100,000 ethnic Armenians fled Nagorno-Karabakh for Armenia after the Azerbaijani offensive in mid-September, nearly emptying out the territory.
The German International Workplace stated Baerbock was scheduled to go to a reception facility for Nagorno-Karabakh’s refugees whereas in Armenia.
Baerbock will proceed on to Baku for a gathering with Azerbaijani International Minister Ceyhun Bayramov and different officers.
Armenian Deputy International Minister Paruyr Hovhannisian earlier on November 3 touted Baerbock’s go to to debate attainable peace efforts and to honor victims of Ottoman-era mass killings as “vital [and] maybe historic.”
Hovhannisian informed the Armenian parliament that the cease “reveals Germany’s dedication to spend money on the [peace] course of as a weighty member of the European Union.”
Hours after her arrival on November 3, Baerbock laid a wreath at a memorial to the victims in 1915-16 of mass killings of greater than 1 million ethnic Armenians by the Ottoman Empire in a tragedy over which Turkey has expressed remorse however resisted acknowledging as a “genocide.”
German lawmakers joined many different international locations in 2016 by passing a decision describing it as a genocide.
The Azerbaijani-Armenian battle that remained open for the reason that Nineteen Nineties has for years threatened to escalate into warfare that would drag in Russian, Turkish, or Iranian forces in an space the place Europe and the West additionally stay closely engaged.
Nagorno-Karabakh initially got here beneath the management of ethnic Armenian forces, backed by the Armenian navy, because the Soviet Union crumbled in separatist combating that resulted in 1994. Throughout a warfare in 2020, nonetheless, Azerbaijan took again elements of Nagorno-Karabakh together with surrounding territory that Armenian forces had claimed in the course of the earlier battle.
Final month, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev raised his nation’s flag in the primary metropolis of Nagorno-Karabakh, generally known as Xankendi to Azeris and Stepanakert to the territory’s ethnic Armenians.
Baerbock’s journey follows feedback on November 2 the place she stated enlarging the European Union by accepting extra Jap European international locations into the bloc was a geopolitical necessity however would require “deep” reforms of its establishments.
“The nice European query of this time isn’t whether or not however how we must always make the [European] Union stronger,” Baerbock stated at a convention in Berlin.
Russian President Vladimir Putin “will proceed to attempt to plow an imperial trench via Europe, which is not going to solely separate Ukraine from us, but additionally Moldova, Georgia, and the Western Balkans,” Baerbock stated.