France Responds to Baku Protest

Karabakh presidential spokesman Davit Babayan

PARIS, STEPANAKERT—Nagorno-Karabakh’s “international legal status can only be determined within the framework of a peaceful and equitable solution agreed upon by all parties concerned,” said a French foreign ministry spokesperson in response to Azerbaijan’s protest regarding the “solidarity” visit of French Parliament members to the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic.

“[The] parliamentarians have been duly advised of our position with respect to Nagorno-Karabakh. Consequently, this visit does not in any way reflect or change France’s policy with respect to this conflict,” said Bernard Valero, the French foreign ministry spokesperson during a press conference in Paris on Tuesday.

“France, like all countries in the international community, including Armenia itself, does not recognize this territory’s independence. This territory’s international legal status can only be determined within the framework of a peaceful and equitable solution agreed upon by all parties concerned,” explained Valero.

“France co-chairs the OSCE Minsk Group, together with the United States and Russia, and as such was tasked with helping to find a compromise based on the Helsinki Final Act and the proposals put forward by the French, American and Russian presidents on numerous occasions, notably during the G8 Summits in L’Aquila in 2009 and Muskoka in 2010,” stated Valero.

The head of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic’s presidential press service said the French response should have a “numbing impact on Azerbaijan.”

“We consider this response quite natural, as Artsakh is not recognized internationally yet. The hysteria caused by Azerbaijan shows Azerbaijan’s true colors. I do not think the Europeans do not have a corresponding assessment of such hysterical behavior at least for themselves,” said Karabakh presidential spokesperson, Davit Babayan.

He explained that throughout the years the number of high-level visits by French delegations was on the rise, noting that “A wide array of practical and personal ties is created as a result of such visits. It is quite important for us to deepen the cooperation within the international framework.”

A four-person delegation headed by Guy Teissier, chairman of the French National Assembly’s committee on national defense, is in the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic and met with President Bako Sahakian, local parliamentarians and other officials in what is being dubbed as a trip show of support for Karabakh’s pursuit of international recognition of its independence.

“Coming to Armenia is a gesture of friendship. Coming to Karabakh is a gesture of solidarity,” Teissier said in a speech at the Karabakh parliament, reported RFE/RL on Monday.

Teissier is joined by his colleagues, Jacques Remiller, Georges Colombier, and Valerie Boyer, all members of the Union for a Popular Movement party.

In response to this visit the Azeri Embassy in France issued note of protest and a foreign ministry spokesperson on Tuesday declared that the members of the French National Assembly were place on Azerbaijan’s “blacklist.”

Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry welcomed the French Foreign Ministry comments. Official Baku interpreted the French response as declaring that the National Assembly members had “illegally” traveled to Azerbaijan.


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  1. Ananias said:

    One thing I do not understand is why we do not respond to preposterous statements of Azeri MPs and media. Truth is on our side and we need to act accordingly otherwise our cause will continually be swept under the tides of time. As Azeris keep preaching that we are still at war! But it seems that our media sources do not understand this and they not respond to Azeri propaganda as powerfully as they can. We need to close this chapter of Armenian history and move on to building our state (or states depending on Artsakh settlement) where our nation can flourish!

    • Ren said:

      I agree, we are losing the propaganda war. Except what we propagate is the truth, not lies like our opponent. It is always easier to tell the truth than to fabricate tales, but unfortunately our truth is not getting out there. Reading online forums and comments sections on different websites it bothers me how many Azeris and Turks actively take their propaganda to the internet, where uninformed foreigners are easily swayed. We must reach these people first, and dispel the myths that the enemy passes around as facts. It really bothers me knowing that a lot of people take their information off the internet, and if one reads only the Azeri or Turkish point of view, they are bound to slowly believe it. Hayrenakicner, we must take this fight to all fronts, even the virtual, where the most damage is being done to us as I type. I urge each and everyone of you to actively participate in the comments sections of various news sites (especially international ones) and be on the look out for virtual saboteurs. Many of these are paid employees of the Azeri government.

    • manooshag said:

      If needed, perhaps there should be a committee formed composed of those who will respond truthfully to the Azeri endless and notably dishonest diatribes… ‘answered’… as well to others who pursue lies and more…

  2. Fred said:

    If Europe recognizes Kosovo, it should recognize Artsakh.
    The problem is that Armenia is not pushing this hard enough, if at all.

    • said:

      The problem is that US already has the largest military base (Camp Bondsteel, yes, you guessed it – in Kosova) in Europe and wouldn’t be allowed to have one in Artsakh!!

  3. Stephen T. Dulgarian said:

    In regards to Independent Nargorno Karabagh, it is very dissapointing that after almost 20 years of being independent that the Republic of Armenia has not recognized this territory which has been historically Armenian lands for over 3000 years. Dosent the world powers relize that the Soviets under Stalins dictatership took away many parcels of Historical Armenia’s territory to appease the Turks in 1922. Stalin gave to the Azeri’s Nakhichevan & Nagorno Karabagh, then he gave the Javakh Region to the Georgians. Note: Stalin being a Georgian gave Javakh to his Georgian Nation. Also, he gave Kars & Ardahan to the Turks to reduce Armenia to what it is today. The Republic of Armenia must move ahead and incorporate Nagorno Karabagh (Artsakh) back to the Armenian Nation.

  4. Hrant K. said:

    Illegally or legally travelled to Artsakh not Baazarbaijan! And eventually will legally recognize “DE JURE”

    the Armenian Free Rebublic of Artsakh!!! (7)

  5. manooshag said:

    Today, the French National Assembly committee on national defense, who join, understand and appreciate the efforts of the freedom loving peoples of Artsakh (NK)…. Thank you to Teissier, Remiller, Colombier, Boyer… all members of the Union for a Popular Movement party… Viva la France!!

  6. Armen said:

    Thank you Stephen T. Dulgarian
    Reunification of Artsakh with mother land Armenia, was and still is the demand of the Armenian people everywhere, what is holding us back from making it happen till now. Is the recognition of independent Artsakh more important then the reunification? The answer is NO FOR SURE.