The Belgian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hadja Lahbib, maintained in Baku, capital of Azerbaijan, the position expressed two days earlier in Armenia about the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh which has opposed the two countries for more than thirty years.
Azerbaijani President Ilhal Aliyev will not receive Belgian Foreign Minister Hadja Lahbib, we learned on Thursday. According to the local press, the Azerbaijani authorities did not appreciate the statements made Tuesday by the head of diplomacy in Armenia about Nagorno-Karabakh. Speaking after a meeting with her Armenian counterpart, Ms. Lahbib expressed her deep concern about the humanitarian situation in this enclave in Azeri territory, populated mainly by Armenians, since the blockade decreed by Baku on the Lachin corridor which connects Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia.
She recalled the position of the European Union, which asks Azerbaijan to guarantee security and traffic in this corridor. “It is the duty of every state to ensure the well-being of its people. The rights and security of the Armenian population must be guaranteed. I will invite my Azerbaijani counterpart to work in this direction,” she said, referring to the need for “respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of everyone“.
The Belgian minister should have been received this Thursday, after her arrival in Baku, by President Aliyev for an exchange of views. According to the Azerbaijani news site “Trend”, citing informed sources, he canceled this meeting because of a “pro-Armenian position and unfounded statements” made in Armenia.
The meeting with the Azeri Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jeyhun Bayramov, on the other hand, took place. She maintained the position expressed two days earlier in Armenia about the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh which has opposed the two countries for more than thirty years. “The only valid way out of this historic conflict is that of dialogue and compromise,” she repeated during a press conference alongside her Azeri counterpart, Jeyhun Bayramov, after a two-hour interview.
The minister also expressed her concern about the humanitarian situation in this enclave very mainly populated by Armenians, located in Azeri territory, since the blocking by Baku of the Lachin corridor, a road axis linking Armenia to Nagorno-Karabakh. “We are very concerned about the restrictions at the Lachin corridor. They certainly find an explanation in your eyes, but they take us away from a solution and endanger the lives of women and men. The urgency is to guarantee freedom of movement in this corridor. It is up to Azerbaijan,” she said.
Despite this call, which is in line with the European Union, the position of the head of Azeri diplomacy has not changed: he accused Armenia of “manipulation” and recalled that his country had offered a solution passing by another point, refused so far by Yerevan. He also denied that there is no more traffic in the corridor, in one direction or another.
This article is originally published on .levif.be