The European Union continues to closely follow the difficult situation arising from the almost total exodus of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia following Azerbaijan’s military operation of 19 and 20 September and the nine-month blockade of the Lachin corridor.
It reiterates that the forced displacement of the civilian population by military or other means is unacceptable. Azerbaijan has the responsibility to ensure the rights and security of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh – including their right to live in their homes with dignity and without facing intimidation or discrimination – and to establish the conditions for their voluntary, safe, dignified and sustainable return. Their cultural heritage and property rights must also be effectively guaranteed and protected by Azerbaijan.
In this situation, the priority remains to provide humanitarian assistance to the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh who have fled to Armenia, and to ensure unhindered international access to Nagorno-Karabakh with a view to enabling independent monitoring of the situation on the ground. On the margins of the European Political Community Summit in Granada on 5 October, President Ursula von der Leyen announced a humanitarian programme worth 10.45 million euros, since increased by 1.7 million, bringing the total amount of humanitarian aid allocated since 2020 to around 33 million euros. The European Union and its Member States stand ready to provide supplementary emergency humanitarian assistance.
The European Union reaffirms its support for the sovereignty, the inviolability of the borders and the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and Armenia. It calls upon Azerbaijan to reaffirm its unequivocal commitment to the territorial integrity of Armenia in accordance with the Alma-Ata Declaration of 1991. It supports the intensification of relations with Armenia in all fields and on the basis of the Republic of Armenia’s needs.
It remains committed to facilitating dialogue between Armenia and Azerbaijan with a view to ensuring a comprehensive, just and lasting peace for the benefit of all the populations of the region. It is counting on the leaders of the two countries meeting in Brussels, as agreed, as soon as possible, and calls upon the parties to commit to the normalization process in good faith and to complete it by the end of this year.
The European Union will continue to keep a close watch on developments in the region.
The candidate countries North Macedonia, Montenegro, Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina, the European Free Trade Association countries and members of the European Economic Area Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, as well as Andorra and San Marino, align themselves with this statement.