Baku urges Germany to pursue more active policy in Karabakh conflict’s settlement

By: Sara Rajabova

Azerbaijan’s deputy foreign minister has urged Germany as one of the leading European countries to pursue a more active policy in the settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

Khalaf Khalafov made the remark at a meeting with Director for Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia of the Federal Foreign Office of Germany, Andreas Peschke.

Peschke, for his part, said Azerbaijan is Germany’s most important partner in the region and the country’s position on Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity remains unchanged.

Armenia occupied over 20 percent of Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions, after laying territorial claims against its South Caucasus neighbor, which had caused a lengthy war in the early 1990s.

Furthermore, Khalafov called on the German government to clarify its position toward Azerbaijan.

He stressed that the steps recently taken against Azerbaijan, the resolutions by the European Parliament and Bundestag in particular, do not serve to heighten the development of relations between Azerbaijan and Germany.

The Bundestag adopted an anti-Azerbaijani resolution in June. The German ambassador was then summoned to Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry, where a formal protest was expressed over the resolution.

The adoption of such a document was assessed by Azerbaijan as a proof of double standards.

Khalafov further added that Germany needs to adjust its position on several issues in order to increase the effectiveness of political dialogue between the two countries.

He noted that Azerbaijan attaches great importance to the development of relations with Germany, adding that the next round of political consultations will allow strengthening the bilateral relations and political dialogue.

Khalafov further called on German companies to actively participate in economic projects in Azerbaijan.

Peschke also expressed the interest of his country in close cooperation with Azerbaijan in all spheres, including the economy.

German businessmen are interested in increasing investments in Azerbaijan, Peschke added.

He described the German-Azerbaijani Foreign Trade Chamber which has been operating since 2012 as a useful platform for further expansion of trade and economic cooperation.

The sides also exchanged views over a number of other bilateral and multilateral issues of mutual interest.

Diplomatic relations between Azerbaijan and Germany were established in February 1992. Economic relations between the two countries are developing successfully. To date, 67 documents have been signed between Azerbaijan and Germany in various fields.

Currently, 157 companies with German capital are operating in Azerbaijan’s commercial, construction, industrial, banking, insurance, agriculture, as well as service sectors. The two countries intend to continue development in this direction.