Editor's choice
Pashinyan and Aliyev to meet in Brussels on 14 May and in Chisinau on 1 June

Pashinyan and Aliyev to meet in Brussels on 14 May and in Chisinau on 1 June

The European Union has officially confirmed that the Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and the Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev will meet in Brussels on Sunday (14 May). The official announcement comes after a claim made in the Financial Times yesterday (8 May) about the two leaders meeting in the Belgian capital this weekend. In a statement, the EU said "President Michel has continued to be in close contact with the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan to advance the EU’s efforts to promote stability in the South Caucasus and normalisation between the two countries," before announcing the trilateral meeting in Brussels this weekend. The statement adds that this meeting in Brussels will be "flanked" by a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz on the sidelines of the upcoming European Political Community summit in Chisinau, Moldova, on 1 June 2023. In addition to this, the EU also said that Pashinyan and Aliyev have "agreed to continue to meet trilaterally in Brussels as frequently as necessary to address ongoing developments on the ground and standing agenda items of the Brussels meetings".
Anakonda-23 NATO exercises underway in Poland

The Anakonda-23 NATO military exercises in Poland began on Saturday (6 May).

Polskie Radio reports that around 13,000 Polish servicemen are taking part in the exercises in southeastern Poland. These exercises take place every three years, with this year's focus on defence and deterrence in the Baltic Sea region.

patrickn97 Mon, 05/08/2023 - 08:54
Syria readmitted to the Arab League 11 years after suspension
Syria has been readmitted to the Arab League 11 years after its membership was suspended over the government's violent crackdown of pro-democracy protests in 2011 that led to the outbreak of the Syrian Civil War. In a meeting of 13 out of 22 foreign ministers at the Arab League's headquarters in the Egyptian capital Cairo on Sunday (7 May), they agreed to "resume the participation of the delegations of the government of the Syrian Arab Republic in the meetings of the Council of the League of Arab States", according to a statement.  The Arab League Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit also told journalists on Sunday that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad could participate in the upcoming Arab League summit in Saudi Arabia if he is invited and if he wants to attend. In the statement released after the vote to readmit Syria, which was reportedly not unanimous, the Arab League said that the "resolution of the Syria conflict is a step-by-step matter", of which Syria's readmission to the group was only a first step. The statement added that the Arab League supports Syria's territorial integrity and the "withdrawal of all foreign forces" from the country.
patrickn97 Mon, 05/08/2023 - 07:16
European Council approves €70m in military aid for Moldova and Georgia

The European Council has adopted measures to support the Moldovan and Georgian defense sectors, it was announced on Thursday (4 May), providing a total of €70 million in military aid to the two countries.

In a press release, the European Council announced extra funding for Georgia and Moldova to "enhance national security, stability and resilience in the defence sector of both countries" under the European Peace Facility.

patrickn97 Fri, 05/05/2023 - 11:38
Biden calls Sudan violence a "betrayal", 17,000 tonnes of food aid looted
U.S. President Joe Biden has called the ongoing violence in Sudan an "unconscionable betrayal" in a statement made at the White House on Thursday (4 May).  The fighting, which will enter its fourth week this weekend, broke out on Saturday 15 April after the Sudanese army and a rival paramilitary group, the Rapid Support Forces, failed to reach an agreement over a transition to a civilian government. “The violence taking place in Sudan is a tragedy — and it is a betrayal of the Sudanese people’s clear demand for civilian government and a transition to democracy,” President Biden said. “I join the peace-loving people of Sudan and leaders around the world in calling for a durable ceasefire between the belligerent parties.” Meanwhile, also on Thursday, the U.S. state department announced that it had completed its evacuation of at least 1,300 U.S. citizens in Sudan, as well as evacuating at least 700 more from other countries. Air strikes and heavy shelling returned to the Sudanese capital city of Khartoum on Thursday as a fragile and frequently violated ceasefire lapsed.
patrickn97 Fri, 05/05/2023 - 10:04
Editor's choice
Editorial: the moment of truth

Editorial: the moment of truth

"The signing of an agreement – it is still not clear if it will be called a Peace Agreement, or something else – will certainly not mean that all issues between Armenia and Azerbaijan are resolved," writes commonspace.eu in this editorial. "There is also much that still needs to be done to build enough trust and confidence for any agreement to not simply be a piece of paper. But an agreement will certainly be the sign of the end of an era of war and hostilities which has also poisoned the atmosphere between the two neighbouring nations." The foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan, accompanied by large delegations, were in Washington this week for face to face negotiations on the future relations between their countries. After a hiatus of several months, during which contact was relegated to exchange of emails, the two sides, with some US prodding, on Monday engaged in what many consider to be the most detailed exercise yet in trying to chart the future relations between the two countries.