President of the European Commission: "The conduct of flights at Khojaly airport would not help the peace process"
APA Azeri Press Agency

President of the European Commission: "The conduct of flights at Khojaly airport would not help the peace process"

[ 07 March 2013 14:14 ]

"The operation of this airport cannot be used to support any claim of a change in the status of Nagorno-Karabakh"

 

Baku – APA. As part of The European Azerbaijan Society's campaign to draw awareness to the illegality of any opening of the so-called Khojaly airport in occupied Azerbaijan by Armenia. TEAS told APA that TEAS Brussels wrote to various European stakeholders to stress the importance of the airport not being allowed to open in accordance with the Chicago Convention and civil aviation law which recognises the airspace above the airport and surrounding occupied lands of Nagorno Karabakh and seven adjacent regions as Azerbaijani.

 

TEAS received a response amongst others from President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso. In his letter the President stated specifically that:

"Avoiding tensions is necessary to create an environment conducive to progress in the peace process. In relation to the Khojaly airport, the EU supports the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs' statements of April 2011 and July 2012. They expressed concern that the operation of this airport could lead to increased tensions. The conduct of flights would not help the peace process and the EU urges both sides to seek a negotiated solution."

"The EU calls upon both sides to act in accordance with international law and consistent with current practice for flights over their territory."

 

Most tellingly the President went on to stipulate:

 

"The operation of this airport cannot be used to support any claim of a change in the status of Nagorno-Karabakh."

 

Based upon these supportive statements, TEAS calls upon all EU and international actors to apply diplomatic pressure on newly-elected Armenian leader Serzh Sargsyan to ensure that Armenia honors its commitments to the OSCE Minsk Group and ICAO and does not seek to provoke Azerbaijan by opening an illegal airport in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.