Motion for a resolution - B9-0167/2024Motion for a resolution
B9-0167/2024

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on closer ties between the EU and Armenia and the need for a peace agreement between Azerbaijan and Armenia

8.3.2024 - (2024/2580(RSP))

to wind up the debate on the statement by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
pursuant to Rule 132(2) of the Rules of Procedure

Pedro Marques, Tonino Picula, Marina Kaljurand, Sylvie Guillaume
on behalf of the S&D Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B9-0163/2024

Procedure : 2024/2580(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected :  
B9-0167/2024
Texts tabled :
B9-0167/2024
Debates :
Texts adopted :

B9‑0167/2024

European Parliament resolution on closer ties between the EU and Armenia and the need for a peace agreement between Azerbaijan and Armenia

(2024/2580(RSP))

The European Parliament,

 having regard to its previous resolutions on Armenia and Azerbaijan, in particular those of 20 May 2021 on prisoners of war in the aftermath of the most recent conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan[1], of 10 March 2022 on the destruction of cultural heritage in Nagorno-Karabakh[2], of 19 January 2023 on the humanitarian consequences of the blockade in Nagorno-Karabakh[3] and of 15 September 2023 on the case of Dr Gubad Ibadoghlu, imprisoned in Azerbaijan[4],

 having regard to the fifth meeting of the EU-Armenia Partnership Council on 13 February 2024,

 having regard to the Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement between the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community and their Member States, of the one part, and the Republic of Armenia, of the other part[5], which fully entered into force on 1 March 2021,

 having regard to the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement of 22 April 1996, between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Republic of Azerbaijan, of the other part[6],

 having regard to the Charter of the United Nations,

 having regard to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group’s 2009 Basic Principles,

 having regard to the trilateral statement by Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia of 9 November 2020,

 having regard to Rule 132(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A. whereas on 19 September 2023, Azerbaijan launched an unjustified attack against Nagorno-Karabakh, resulting in several hundred casualties, the death of civilians, and the majority of the population fleeing from their homes and the region;

B. whereas this military aggression was preceded by Azerbaijan’s nine-month blockade, beginning on12 December 2022, of the Lachin corridor, as the only land corridor linking the mostly Armenian-populated Nagorno-Karabakh region with Armenia, the establishment of a check point on the same corridor in April 2023, in violation of the 9 November 2020 trilateral statement between Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia, a military build-up around Nagorno-Karabakh and along the border with Armenia, as well as aggressive and inflammatory rhetoric by Azerbaijan’s leadership;

C. whereas the Russian so-called peacekeeping forces present as part of the 9 November 2020 trilateral statement have not acted, either against Azerbaijan’s blockade of the Lachin corridor, or upon its establishment of a check point, or against Azerbaijan’s most recent military aggression;

D. whereas the use of military force to solve political disputes constitutes a violation of the UN Charter;

E. whereas the EU fully supports the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Armenia and Azerbaijan, and actively supports the efforts to solve the dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh by peaceful means and with respect for the rights of the population concerned, inter alia through the work of its Special Representative for the South Caucasus and the crisis in Georgia and the talks between Armenia and Azerbaijan mediated by the President of the European Council;

F. whereas Armenia has made significant progress on reforms related to democracy and the rule of law; whereas Azerbaijan has continued to suppress civil society, independent media and political opposition, in particular ahead of the presidential election of 7 February 2024;

1. Condemns the repeated use of force in relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan and underlines the urgent need for continued and enhanced efforts to normalise relations between the two countries and their populations and to conclude a comprehensive and sustainable peace agreement;

2. Expresses its support for the resumption of talks between Armenia and Azerbaijan on all pending issues, with the aim of concluding a peace treaty, and calls on both parties to remain fully committed to a lasting and peaceful settlement of the long-standing dispute, through dialogue and negotiation; welcomes the EU’s commitment to continuing the facilitation of dialogue between all sides, to ensure a comprehensive, sustainable peace for the benefit of all people of the region;

3. Reaffirms that a comprehensive peace treaty must guarantee the rights and security of the Karabakh Armenians and the Armenian population of other conflict-afflicted areas; reiterates, in this regard, its firm condemnation of Azerbaijan’s military aggression against Nagorno-Karabakh in September 2023 which violated Azerbaijan’s international commitments, contradicted its stated intentions of working towards sustainable peace with Armenia, and undermined the peace negotiations between Armenia and Azerbaijan;

4. Underlines that the flagrant inaction of the Russian so-called peacekeepers present on the ground has unmistakably demonstrated Russia’s failure, if not its blatant lack of political will, to protect the rights of the local population of Nagorno-Karabakh and to ensure that the trilateral statement of 9 November 2020 is respected;

5. Calls on Azerbaijan to genuinely engage in a comprehensive and transparent dialogue with the Karabakh Armenians to ensure respect of their rights and guarantee their security, including their right to return to and live in their homes in dignity and safety, and their land and property rights, to maintain their distinct identity and fully enjoy their civic, cultural, social and religious rights;

6. Calls on Azerbaijan to reaffirm its unequivocal commitment to the 1991 Almaty Declaration guaranteeing the territorial integrity of Armenia and Azerbaijan and to agree to the delimitation of their bilateral border in line with the letter and spirit of the 1991 Almaty Declaration;

7. Reiterates its support for the ongoing strengthening of the EU mission in Armenia, as well as for working towards extending its mandate to both sides of the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, in order to effectively contribute to human security and confidence-building and to help prevent further military escalation and violence on Armenia’s borders;

8. Welcomes the progress achieved on the implementation of the EU-Armenia Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement, which shows Armenia’s interest and commitment to strengthening and deepening relations with the EU, based on common values, including human rights, the rule of law and democracy;

9. Welcomes the launch of work on a new EU-Armenia Partnership Agenda that will establish more ambitious joint priorities for cooperation across many policy areas and supports Armenia’s ambition to prepare for a visa liberalisation dialogue with the EU;

10. Notes Armenia’s suspension of its membership in the Collective Security Treaty Organization, as a reaction to a perceived failure of assistance against military aggressions;

11. Denounces the continued crackdown on civil activists, independent media and political opposition in Azerbaijan, including the misuse of fabricated criminal investigations to suppress criticism of the authorities and political dissent;

12. Calls on the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the European External Action Service (EEAS) and the Member States to condemn the serious human rights violations and breaches of democracy in Azerbaijan, and to raise concrete concerns in all bilateral meetings, as well as in the negotiations on a future partnership agreement;

13. Reiterates its conviction that the EU cannot morally accept negotiating a future partnership agreement with a country such as Azerbaijan, that blatantly violates principles of international law as well as its international obligations and is thus neither a reliable nor a trustworthy partner; urges the High Representative and the EEAS, therefore, to suspend the negotiations for a renewed partnership agreement until Azerbaijan has demonstrated its genuine readiness to respect the rights and security concerns of the Karabakh Armenians, and has contributed to substantial progress towards a comprehensive and sustainable peace agreement with Armenia, not only through words but, first and foremost, through deeds;

14. Calls on the Council, in the light of Azerbaijan’s continued domestic repression and threats against the territorial integrity of Armenia, to remain ready to reconsider the EU’s relations with Azerbaijan and to impose targeted and individual sanctions against the Azerbaijani authorities responsible; calls on the Commission to reconsider the ‘strategic partnership’ with Azerbaijan in the field of energy, given Azerbaijan’s repeated violations of its international commitments, including commitments made in talks mediated by the EU and binding provisions under international law; notes that, in the light of Azerbaijan’s aggression against Armenia in September 2022 and its unjustified use of force against and forced displacement of the population of Nagorno-Karabakh in September 2023, as well as the country’s alarming human rights record, developing such a ‘strategic partnership’ is incompatible with the objectives of EU foreign policy as defined in Article 21 of the Treaty on European Union;

15. Reiterates that the deepening of cooperation with Azerbaijan should be subject to Azerbaijan respecting its commitments as a member of the Council of Europe and the OSCE, and that the release of all political prisoners is an indispensable condition for signing a partnership agreement with the EU;

16. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the Council, the Commission, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the Council of Europe, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the President, Government and Parliament of Armenia and the President, Government and Parliament of Azerbaijan.

 

Last updated: 11 March 2024
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