Turkish Press: Azerbaijan slams allegations by EU foreign policy chief during news conference in Brussels

Yeni Safak 
Turkey – Feb 14 2024

Azerbaijan slams allegations by EU foreign policy chief during news conference in Brussels

Josep Borrell ‘turns a blind eye' to Armenia's military provocation, dismisses ‘unprovoked sniper attack' that injured an Azerbaijani serviceman, says Foreign Ministry

Azerbaijan on Wednesday slammed allegations made by EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell during a joint news conference with Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan a day earlier.

In a statement by the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry, Baku accused Borrell of “whitewashing” and “turning a blind eye” to Armenia's military provocation, saying the EU side is dismissive of the Azerbaijani serviceman injured due to an “unprovoked sniper attack.”

The cross-border fire came following five months of stability in the Azerbaijani-Armenian border, the statement stressed, and said Baku's response to the provocation was “totally adequate and of a local character.”

“These response measures have also prevented Armenia from further expanding its military escalation,” it added.

The statement also defined Borrell's proposal to distance forces as “regretful,” and said “mercenaries” deployed by Armenia in border regions under the EU's mission in the country “jeopardize the lives of Azerbaijani servicemen and civilians.”

“Furthermore, it is unacceptable to refer to residents of Armenian origin who voluntarily departed Azerbaijan's Karabakh economic region as displaced people and to utilize non-existent names such as ‘Nagorno-Karabakh' referring to this region,” it noted.

Azerbaijan regrets Borrell's “unilateral pro-Armenian stance” which it said creates an impasse between Azerbaijan and EU institutions, while further isolating himself from the Azerbaijan-Armenia normalization process, the statement also said.

During a news conference with Mirzoyan, Borrell said Azerbaijan's measures to the cross-border fire “seems to be disproportionate,” expressing that the recent incident illustrates the need for the “distancing of forces” advocated by the EU for a long time.

Azerbaijan's State Border Service said on Monday that one of its soldiers was injured due to shots fired by Armenian forces toward the country's southwestern Zangilan district.

Baku on Tuesday said it carried out a "revenge operation" in response, destroying the combat post from where its servicemen were fired upon.

According to Armenia's Defense Ministry, four of its servicemen were killed and one injured.