Azerbaijan is “strategically important” to maintain the EU’s energy independence, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Friday, APA reports.
On the way to the informal meeting of EU leaders in the Spanish city of Granada, Orban underlined that “Azerbaijan is a key country, without Azerbaijan we cannot have energy independence.”
He said that without Azerbaijan’s gas supply, the EU would not be able to cut its dependence on Russian fossil fuels.
For his part, Charles Michel, the president of the European Council, told reporters that he invited leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan to hold talks in Brussels later in October and that both of them have accepted the invitation.
Michel vowed to “work very hard to make progress in the field of the normalization between Azerbaijan and Armenia.”
He stressed that the EU “has no hidden agenda” when it mediates between the two countries.
The EU wants to work for a “prosperous and stable” South Caucasus and will use all the diplomatic tools “to encourage both leaders to make an agreement” on the normalization of the relationship.
The agreement must be based on the mutual recognition of each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, Michel added.
On the sidelines of the summit of the European Political Community, a pan-European platform with the participation of over 40 leaders, Michel held a meeting on Wednesday with leaders from Armenia, Germany, and France to discuss the latest developments in the South Caucasus.
Azerbaijan was also invited but President Ilham Aliyev decided not to attend the meeting in protest due to the French government’s recent actions.