European Parliament strongly condemns Turkey’s destabilizing role in Karabakh

Panorama, Armenia
Jan 22 2021

In the resolution on the implementation of the Common Foreign and Security Policy – annual report 2020 adopted on Wednesday, January 20, the European Parliament (EP) denounces Turkey’s destabilizing role in Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh).

The resolution says the European Parliament takes good note of the agreement on a complete ceasefire in and around Nagorno-Karabakh signed by Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia on 9 November 2020 and hopes that this agreement will save the lives of both civilians and military personnel and open brighter perspectives for a peaceful settlement of this deadly conflict.

It regrets that changes to the status quo were made through military force, rather than peaceful negotiations, strongly condemns the killing of civilians and destruction of civilian facilities and places of worship, condemns the reported use of cluster munitions in the conflict, urges both Armenia and Azerbaijan to ratify the Convention on Cluster Munitions, which comprehensively bans their use, without further delay.

The resolution stresses that a lasting settlement still remains to be found and that the process of achieving peace and determining the region’s future legal status should be led by the Minsk Group co-chairs and founded on the group’s Basic Principles, highlights the urgent need to ensure that humanitarian assistance can reach those in need, that the security of the Armenian population and its cultural heritage in Nagorno-Karabakh is ensured, and that internally displaced persons and refugees are allowed to return to their former places of residence.

The EP calls for all allegations of war crimes to be duly investigated and those responsible to be brought to justice and calls on the EU to be more meaningfully involved in the settlement of the conflict and not to leave the fate of the region in the hands of other powers.

The resolution takes the view that the EU needs to urgently define a better geopolitical and overall strategy for its short-, mid- and long-term relations with Turkey, particularly in the light of continued democratic backsliding and the growing assertiveness of Turkey’s foreign policy, which is contributing to the escalation of tensions and having a destabilizing impact that threatens regional peace and stability in the Eastern Mediterranean, Middle East and South Caucasus, and its role in conflicts in Syria, Iraq, Libya and Nagorno-Karabakh.

In Article 38 the European Parliament strongly condemns the destabilizing role of Turkey which further undermines the fragile stability in the whole of the South Caucasus region and calls on Turkey to refrain from any interference in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, including offering military support to Azerbaijan, and to desist from its destabilizing actions and actively promote peace. It condemns, furthermore, the transfer of foreign terrorist fighters by Turkey from Syria and elsewhere to Nagorno-Karabakh, as confirmed by international actors, including the OSCE Minsk Group co-chair countries and regrets its willingness to destabilize the OSCE Minsk Group as it pursues ambitions of playing a more decisive role in the conflict.