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Conflict and Peace

Stories related to violent conflicts, diplomatic tensions, and conflict prevention, mediation and resolution.

Editor's choice
Opinion
Opinion: Historic developments are taking place in Armenia-Azerbaijan relations, but the signing of a peace treaty will likely take a longer time

Opinion: Historic developments are taking place in Armenia-Azerbaijan relations, but the signing of a peace treaty will likely take a longer time

On May 22, the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan met in Brussels with the mediation of European Council President Charles Michel to discuss the peace process. It is worth noting that since the beginning of this year, the representatives of the two South Caucasian republics have met exclusively via the mediation of the EU, while the only Russia-mediated meeting – that of the foreign ministers held on May 12 –  took place on the sidelines of another major event and brought about no novelty in the negotiations. The Brussels summit, however, delivered some very important outcomes which, if implemented, will constitute a critical breakthrough in the peace process. The quick implementation of some of the issues agreed by president Aliyev and prime minister Pashinyan at their meeting in Brussels, can be described as truly historic, writes Vasif Huseynov in this op-ed. "But the signing of a peace treaty will likely take a longer time, and necessitate an agreement not only between Baku and Yerevan, but also between Moscow and Brussels", he adds.

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News
G7 countries reject outright attempts to redraw borders by force in violation of sovereignty and territorial integrity.

G7 countries reject outright attempts to redraw borders by force in violation of sovereignty and territorial integrity.

In a strongly worded statement issued on Saturday (14 May), the foreign ministers of the G7 countries have declared steadfast solidarity and support for Ukraine as it defends itself against Russia’s unjustifiable, unprovoked and illegal war of aggression, a war in which Belarus is complicit. The foreign ministers of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, UK and US, and the High Representative of the EU stated that "they are committed to helping Ukraine, a democracy and a UN member, uphold its sovereignty and territorial integrity, to defend itself and resist future attacks or coercion, choose its own future and prosper." In their final statement after their meeting the Ministers declared: "In the presence of the Foreign Ministers of Ukraine and Moldova, we underscore Ukraine’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, independence and right for self-defence under the UN Charter. This war of aggression has reaffirmed our determination to reject outright attempts to redraw borders by force in violation of sovereignty and territorial integrity."
Editor's choice
Opinion
Opinion: The Armenia-Azerbaijan peace process proceeds despite challenges

Opinion: The Armenia-Azerbaijan peace process proceeds despite challenges

The Armenia-Azerbaijan peace process is passing through a critical stage which will determine the future of the relations between the two countries: Either they will now agree on normalization of relations and put an end to their hostilities, or they will remain stuck in these disputes for years to come. Hopefully, peace efforts will prevail over the agendas of nationalist groups and their external allies, writes Dr Vasif Huseynov in this op-ed
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News
Ukraine expects Russia to pay 600 billion USD in war reparations

Ukraine expects Russia to pay 600 billion USD in war reparations

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelesnky said Tuesday Russia should have to pay reparations for the damage it caused to Ukraine after the war is over. “Russia will have to pay reparations. We know it clearly,” Zelensky said when addressing The Wall Street Journal CEO Summit 2022. Since the start of the war, Zelensky says Russia has caused $600 billion in damage to the country. The damage is from the Russian military’s shelling of cities, which have destroyed buildings and water systems, leaving some of those left in the country struggling for basic resources. “They have destroyed everything themselves,” Zelensky told the Journal, noting how quickly the economic relationship between Russia and Ukraine changed. Zelensky said that after the war, Ukrainians want to rebuild the country quickly, calling for businesses to flock to the nation. “I’m sure after victory we will do everything quite fast, and Ukraine will be more beautiful than before,” Zelensky said, adding businesses would “get access to our country, our 40 million-plus market.” Zelensky said the war will not end until weapons are laid down, with Ukraine’s goal to one day take back all the land Russia has occupied, including Crimea.
Editor's choice
Opinion
Russia’s war against Ukraine: where do we stand and what can the future bring?

Russia’s war against Ukraine: where do we stand and what can the future bring?

"Two months into the war against Ukraine there is no end in sight and Russia’s most recent actions even point to an intensification of the fight. The Russian leadership must stop the aggression and reconsider the unacceptable path it has chosen: for the sake of Ukraine, Russia, Europe and the wider world", says Josep Borrell, EU High Representative for foreign and security policy in this article which first appeared on his blog on the website of the European External Action Service on 26 April 2022. In the article the head of the EU diplomacy says that "Defending Ukraine from Russia’s invasion is rejecting the law of the jungle, the notion that “might makes right”. Being “neutral” is a false concept here. One country has invaded another one. Putting them on the same footing fails to differentiate between the attacker and the attacked. Such “neutrality” may respond, of course, to a variety of reasons, from hidden alignment to fear of reprisals, but it becomes in practice support to Russia and its war of aggression."
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Analysis
Fear and lack of trust are an obstacle for peaceful co-existence between Armenians and Azerbaijanis in Nagorno-Karabakh

Fear and lack of trust are an obstacle for peaceful co-existence between Armenians and Azerbaijanis in Nagorno-Karabakh

A recent survey of women from the large community of Azerbaijanis displaced by the conflict in Nagorno Karabakh in the 1990s shows that fear and lack of trust are an obstacle for peaceful co-existence between Armenians and Azerbaijanis in Nagorno-Karabakh. The survey is part of a report, “IDP Women: needs assessment for post conflict life, including expectations for safe return home”, prepared by Khalisa Shahverdiyeva on behalf of the Azerbaijani NGO “Women’s empowerment for sustainable development”. Following the 2020 Karabakh war a new situation has emerged which opened the prospect of the return of hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis displaced by the fighting in the 1990s to their place of origin, and in many cases to live together or in close proximity with Armenian communities. The survey covered 590 internally displaced women, while 30 more women were interviewed to get a tentative picture of their needs and expectations, including their fears and concerns for peace-building and returning home.  The overwhelming majority (87.55%) of respondents highlighted the necessity of being free from danger as a decisive factor behind their decision to relocate. Consequently, the full-scale clearance of landmines supported by a guarantee of non-resumption of armed hostilities have been underscored as key factors for IDPs’ return home.  
Editor's choice
Opinion
Opinion: Brussels summit has given a new momentum to Armenia-Azerbaijan peace prospects

Opinion: Brussels summit has given a new momentum to Armenia-Azerbaijan peace prospects

"In the days since the Brussels summit of the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan on April 6, diplomatic activity around the peace process between the two countries has intensified. In contrast to the first year after the Second Karabakh War, the role of the EU in this context has grown and provides a viable alternative to the Russia-led track in the negotiations", writes Vasif Huseynov in this op-ed. "Against this backdrop, as agreed in Brussels, Armenia and Azerbaijan have launched the preparatory work for a peace treaty which triggered a bilateral phone conversation between the Armenian and Azerbaijani foreign ministers - the first time this happened in recent decades. These developments are not welcome by Russia-aligned revanchist forces in Armenia, separatist groups in Azerbaijani Karabakh, or, to some extent, by Russia."