Azerbaijan Summons EU Ambassador over Concerns about EUMA Activities
The Azerbaijani Ministry of Foreign Affairs has summoned the European Union (EU) Ambassador to Baku, Peter Michalko, over concerns regarding the activities of the EU Monitoring Mission in Azerbaijan (EUMA).
In a statement released by the Azerbaijani Ministry of Foreign Affairs, it was expressed that EUMA’s activities have caused serious concerns in Azerbaijan, stating that they were contrary to the initial agreements. Ambassador Michalko was informed that EUMA was being misused as a propaganda tool against Azerbaijan, instead of contributing to regional stability and confidence building between Azerbaijan and Armenia.
The statement highlighted that various European officials and unofficial delegations, under the scope of EUMA, visited the Azerbaijani border and engaged in what was described as “binocular diplomacy”. These visits were condemned as they were perceived to spread hatred against Azerbaijan and promote unfounded anti-Azerbaijan sentiments.
Furthermore, the Azerbaijani side emphasized that the activation of “binocular diplomacy” was particularly worrying at a time when there was unprecedented calm on the border and both Azerbaijan and Armenia were implementing serious confidence-building measures.
The EU Ambassador was also reminded that such activities did not align with EUMA’s goals of contributing to the building of trust and confidence as a neutral actor.
Additionally, the EU was called upon to take all necessary measures to avoid any activities that would affect Azerbaijan’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, or legitimate security interests.
It is worth noting that Armenia had previously requested the EU to assign a civilian mission in its country, and the EU Council decided to establish the mission on January 23, 2023. The EU’s civilian mission began its work on February 20, 2023, with the goal of contributing to stability and normalization efforts on Armenia’s Azerbaijani border.
The tensions and concerns regarding the activities of the EU Monitoring Mission in Azerbaijan continue to be a point of contention between the EU and Azerbaijan.