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Charles Michel Proposes Step-by-Step Approach for Lachin Corridor and Aghdam Route

Charles Michel Proposes Step-by-Step Approach for Lachin Corridor and Agdam Route

The office of Charles Michel, President of the European Council, has issued a statement addressing the ongoing situation in Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh), Armenia, and Azerbaijan, emphasizing efforts to alleviate the humanitarian crisis and proposing a step-by-step approach to resolve key issues.

President Michel, in collaboration with Toivo Klaar, the European Union Special Representative (EUSR) for the South Caucasus, has been actively involved in advancing the normalization process between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Their primary focus in recent weeks has been addressing the urgent humanitarian needs of Artsakh Armenians.

EUSR Klaar and President Michel's team have maintained continuous communication with officials in Baku, Yerevan, and representatives of Artsakh Armenians to develop a solution for unblocking vital access routes.

The humanitarian situation on the ground is rapidly deteriorating, necessitating immediate action to meet the local population's needs.

President Charles Michel has proposed a step-by-step approach that reflects a well-defined sequence for the full operation of the Lachin corridor and the opening of the Aghdam route.

These discussions have centered on the sequencing of these steps, the types of cargo to be transported via each route, and the associated procedures.

The European Union strongly advocates for the unblocking of the Lachin corridor, in accordance with previous agreements and the International Court of Justice (ICJ) Order. Additionally, the use of the Aghdam road to supply essential goods is seen as a viable and sustainable solution. These discussions gained momentum following the leaders' meeting in Brussels on July 15, 2023.

The EU has also emphasized the importance of Baku providing clarity to Artsakh Armenians regarding procedures for their movements through the Lachin corridor to and from Armenia.

Simultaneously, efforts have been directed towards the swift restoration of electricity and gas supplies to Artsakh Armenians.

Beyond addressing immediate concerns, the EU has stressed the necessity of tackling the long-term legacies of the conflict to facilitate a sustainable resolution. Dialogue between Baku and representatives of Armenians residing in the former Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Oblast will be crucial in this context. The rights and security of Karabakh Armenians must be assured, and discussions on specific modalities should commence promptly.

To foster confidence and trust, the EU has proposed various suggestions for international support and engagement on the ground to reinforce the implementation of agreements.

All these efforts share a common goal: ensuring the irreversible normalization of relations between Baku and Yerevan for the benefit of all affected populations. In light of the current escalation, the time is ripe for courageous compromise solutions.

The EU has actively engaged with other international actors to address the unsustainable situation, fostering regular personal contacts and exchanges of views to find the best possible solutions.


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