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 Thursday, April 11 2024 16:19
Marianna Mkrtchyan

Any reports on shootings on border disturbing - Toivo Klaar 

Any reports on shootings on border disturbing - Toivo Klaar 

ArmInfo.Any reports on shootings on the border are disturbing.  Toivo Klaar, the European Union (EU) Special Representative for the South Caucasus and the Crisis in Georgia, told the RFE/RL Armenian Service as he commented on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border tensions amid last week's Armenia-US-EU meeting in Brussels.

Klaar found it difficult to say whether the ceasefire violations are  Baku's response to deepening relations between Armenia and the EU,  but he assured that the European Union wants to see real, substantive  negotiations that will lead to a peace treaty, agreements on border  demarcation and the opening of communications.

Attention should be focused on this, he said, emphasizing that it is  necessary to return to the substantive negotiation process.

To the remark that for six months now officials have been talking  about the possible imminent signing of a peace treaty, but things are  still there, the EU representative suggested that there could be  several reasons.  But from the information on where the process is  today on various fronts, he also think that it really shouldn't take  long to achieve a positive outcome if there is political will and  commitment. And we want to work towards that direction together with  Armenia and Azerbaijan to achieve a positive result. Because, as he  said, he thinks it won't take that long if there is political  commitment on both sides.

When asked whether Armenia would be able to find a place in the EU  community in the foreseeable future, Klaara assured that  strengthening relations between the European Union and Armenia  corresponds to the interests of both parties.

It has to be seen how these relations will develop. Mr Klaar thinks  that compared to what it was just a few years ago, relations between  the EU and Armenia have developed significantly. But what the outcome  will be, he thinks it's too early to say. It depends on the political  decisions taken in Yerevan. It depends on the political decisions  taken in Brussels and in the member countries. And all this is a  process in which Armenia has just begun to achieve some elements of  where we might have been a little further 10 years ago, but then, of  course, Armenia decided otherwise. And therefore we may be making up  for lost time in our relations, the EU special representative said.

At the same time, Klaar avoided answering the direct question whether  Armenia's membership in the CSTO is an obstacle to this. He thinks  the Armenian government's and people's desires should be considered,  where they want to go and how they best see the relationship  developing. Mr Klaar thinks the good thing is that strengthening of  the EU-Armenian relations has been seen. Armenia at a meeting last  week (in Brussels - ed.) and the United States expressed their  readiness to help support Armenia's resilience. This was a very  important message that President von der Leyen conveyed to Prime  Minister Pashinyan, the European official said.

On April 5, a Pashinyan-Blinken-von der Leyen meeting took place in  Brussels. At the beginning of the negotiations, in particular, the  President of the European Commission announced that Brussels would  provide Armenia with an additional 270 million euros of assistance  over the next four years in order to support small and medium-sized  businesses, as well as infrastructure development. The US Secretary  of State also announced additional assistance, with assistance  several times less than the European one: $65 million. The Prime  Minister of Armenia expressed gratitude for this ongoing commitment  and emphasized that Armenia is ready to continue reforms and close  relations with the West.  

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