Clause on Karabakh reflects EU's consistent approach to Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict – lawmaker  

16:02 • 10.04.18



The clause on Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh), enshrined in the EU-Armenia cooperation agreement, reflects the European Union’s consistent approach to its principles and values, a senior lawmaker said in a parliament speech on Tuesday.

 

Addressing the National Assembly session, discussing the ratification of the Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA), Head of the Standing Committee on Foreign Relations Armen Ashotyan, said expressed his high appreciation of the document’s current format(without any reference to the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict).

 

“The parliaments of the EU member states are free, but Armenia must have not only moral and historical but also legal grounds to insist that the resolution on Nagorno-Karabakh is not absolutely a favor for Armenia. That resolution, underlying the agreement with the EU, is not a reverence or an act  of good will; it is just the European Union’s commitment to its principles and consistent approach [confirming] that the OSCE Minsk Group’s mission and principles offer a reasonable compromise by the only legitimate international mission, ” he added.

 

As an important step towards giving the document a full value, Ashotyan stressed the importance of its future ratification by the European Parliament. “It would be desirable to see that until the end of the current parliament’s term, i.e. – end of May or early June, 2019. Do we have that opportunity? Yes, but that’s a bit ambitious issue, ” he said, noting that the Association Agreements with Georgia and Ukraine were ratified within just 1.5 years.

 

“I find it very important for our European partners to understand that they cannot possibly divide the Eastern Partnership [member states] into loved children and second-class or adopted kids. That simply is impermissible. Yes, this agreement is not an Association Agreement, but its political part almost entirely repeats the [clauses enshrined in the EU-Armenia] Association Agreement,” he said, affirming Armenia’s willingness to initiate further reforms.


Ashotyan also addressed the visa liberalization issue. “This agreement gives us also a kind of political energy to embark on the next legal level of the EU-Armenia relations. Yes, the dialogue over visa liberalization is a process linked to a political decision. There are certainly technical issues - conventionalities our country is obliged to meet. But we all are perfectly aware that there is a political will underlying those conventionalities and technical problems. Yet, that should not be unilateral will. Such a political will must be demonstrated by the EU. So my request to the EU member states is to avoid linking the visa liberalization with Armenia to their migration-related problems with other countries,” he added,  

 

 

Nelly Lazaryan





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