The President of the European Council, Charles Michel, on Wednesday (2 June) held discussions with the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan. Michel met the Armenian prime minister, Nikol Pashinyan, in Brussels, and spoke on the phone with the Azerbaijani president, Ilham Aliyev.
A statement published on the website of the European Council said that Michel stressed the importance for the European Union of stability and prosperity of the South Caucasus and of deepening relations with the two partner countries.
He recalled that the full implementation of the 9 November 2020 ceasefire declaration by Azerbaijan and Armenia is essential for regional security and stability. The EU is ready to provide expertise on border delimitation and demarcation and to support confidence building.
The European Union also encourages both parties to co-operate, as matter of urgency, on the return of detainees and full transparency with regard to mine fields, and other important humanitarian issues. The EU is providing almost 20 million euros in humanitarian assistance and will continue to be engaged.
The statement added that addressing these immediate challenges is, however, only a first step towards a sustainable peaceful settlement. The President of the European Council called on both sides to engage in renewed negotiations in a constructive spirit.
The European Union has a profound interest in the security, stability and prosperity of the South Caucasus region as an integral part of the EU's Eastern Partnership, the statement concluded.