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EU Concerned About ‘Humanitarian Crisis’ In Karabakh


Belgium - EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell and Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan meet in Brussels, January 25, 2023.

The European Union’s foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, reiterated EU concerns about the continuing Azerbaijani blockade of Nagorno-Karabakh’s land link with Armenian when he met with Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan in Brussels on Wednesday.

Borrell said that they discussed the blockade as well as the “security situation in the wider region” and “prospects for resuming peace talks” between Armenia and Azerbaijan.

“Need to avoid a humanitarian crisis,” he wrote on Twitter after the “good meeting” with Mirzoyan.

Visiting Yerevan earlier this week, the EU’s special envoy to the South Caucasus, Toivo Klaar, said that “solutions have to urgently be found” to the unfolding crisis. Klaar held a separate meeting with Mirzoyan in Brussels.

The EU, the United States and Russia have repeatedly urged Baku to reopen the Lachin corridor blocked by Azerbaijani government-backed protesters on December 12.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken telephoned Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev for that purpose on Monday. Aliyev again defended the protesters demanding that the Azerbaijani government be allowed to inspect “illegal” copper mines in Karabakh.

The U.S. State Department insisted on Tuesday on a “full restoration of free movement” through the sole road connecting Karabakh to Armenia and the outside world.

“Ongoing obstruction of normal commercial and private travel along the Lachin corridor is causing shortages of food, fuel, and medicine for the residents who depend on the corridor for those very basic supplies,” the department spokesman, Ned Price, told reporters. “Periodic disruptions to natural gas and other basic utilities exacerbate the worsening humanitarian situation.”

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