France Recalls Ambassador to Azerbaijan Amid Escalating Tensions

France recalls ambassador to Azerbaijan, accusing Baku of damaging bilateral ties over Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, further complicating efforts to normalize relations between the two neighbors.

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France Recalls Ambassador to Azerbaijan Amid Escalating Tensions

France Recalls Ambassador to Azerbaijan Amid Escalating Tensions

France has recalled its ambassador to Azerbaijan for consultations, accusing Baku of taking unilateral actions that have damaged the bilateral relationship between the two countries. The decision, announced by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, comes as tensions between France and Azerbaijan have escalated in recent months over the long-standing conflict in the Nagorno-Karabakh region.

French President Emmanuel Macron met with Ambassador Anne Boillon in Paris to discuss the issue. The French government asserted that Azerbaijan has continued actions harmful to the relationship between France and Azerbaijan. "France has decided to recall its ambassador to Azerbaijan for consultations due to the continuation of unilateral actions by Azerbaijan in recent months, which have damaged relations between the two countries," the foreign ministry stated.

The tensions between France and Azerbaijan are rooted in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, with France traditionally supporting Armenia, a close ally, and Azerbaijan's efforts to regain control of the region. President Macron expressed regret over Azerbaijan's actions and called for an explanation of its intentions. France has reiterated its support for the normalization of relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia, while respecting international law and the territorial integrity of both countries.

Why this matters: The recall of the French ambassador to Azerbaijan highlights the deep-rooted complexities surrounding the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and its impact on regional stability. The escalating tensions between France and Azerbaijan have the potential to further complicate efforts to normalize relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia, two neighbors that have been in a territorial conflict for 30 years.

As relations between France and Russia fray, Armenia is increasingly relying on defense cooperation with France, including the purchase of precision rifles and the sale of defense equipment. This has provoked anger from Azerbaijan, which has accused France of supporting Armenia in the territorial conflict. The recent tensions have also included the arrest and expulsion of French nationals in Azerbaijan, further escalating the bilateral tensions.

In a statement, the French foreign ministry emphasized that France reiterates its support for the normalization of relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia, while respecting international law and the territorial integrity of the two countries. The ministry also noted that France, which hosts a large Armenian diaspora, has said it is ready to participate in mediation efforts while displaying its unwavering support for Armenia.

Key Takeaways

  • France recalls ambassador to Azerbaijan, accusing Baku of damaging ties.
  • Tensions stem from Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, with France supporting Armenia.
  • Escalating tensions may complicate efforts to normalize Azerbaijan-Armenia relations.
  • France reiterates support for normalization, respecting territorial integrity.
  • France ready to mediate, maintains unwavering support for Armenia.