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France Recalls Ambassador to Azerbaijan, Accusing Baku of Actions Detrimental to Bilateral Ties

France Recalls Ambassador to Azerbaijan, Accusing Baku of Actions Detrimental to Bilateral Ties

BREAKING NEWS: France has made the decision to recall its ambassador to Azerbaijan, accusing Baku of actions detrimental to their bilateral ties.

President Emmanuel Macron held discussions with Ambassador Anne Boillon in Paris regarding the matter, according to a statement released by the foreign ministry. The statement pointedly criticized Azerbaijan for its recent "unilateral actions damaging to the relationship between our two countries."

The relationship between Azerbaijan and France has long been strained, primarily due to historical tensions centered around Artsakh, also known as Nagorno-Karabakh. Nagorno-Karabakh, which has been a source of conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia, witnessed a resurgence of hostilities in 2020, resulting in Azerbaijani forces occupying the ethnic Armenia region. The conflict escalated further with Azerbaijan's lightning offensive in September 2023, ultimately leading to the complete occupation of Artsakh.

French officials, including President Macron, have consistently expressed apprehensions regarding Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev's territorial ambitions, particularly concerning Armenian territories.

During the meeting with Ambassador Boillon, President Macron conveyed his disappointment over Azerbaijan's actions and emphasized the need for clarification from the Azerbaijani government regarding its intentions, as stated by the foreign ministry.

Efforts to facilitate dialogue between Azerbaijan and Armenia to normalize their relations have faced significant hurdles, with minimal progress achieved thus far. Despite the challenges, France reaffirmed its support for the normalization of relations between the two countries, emphasizing the importance of adherence to international law and respect for territorial integrity.

In light of deteriorating relations with Moscow, Armenia has increasingly turned to France for defense cooperation. Recent agreements between Armenia and France include a deal for the purchase of precision rifles from a French arms manufacturer, PGM, though specific details regarding the transaction remain undisclosed. Furthermore, France's announcement of the sale of defense equipment, including radar systems and night vision goggles, to Armenia in October 2023 further strained relations with Azerbaijan, eliciting strong objections from Baku.

The recall of the French ambassador shows the seriousness of the situation and highlights the deep-rooted complexities surrounding the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. 


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