Stefan Fule: EU message to President of Azerbaijan on holding free and fair presidential elections
The pre-election message of EU President Ilham Aliyev is quite clear: ensure the free and fair elections, and expand the political dialogue, Stefan Fule, EU Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy said in an interview given to Radio "Liberty", summing up the recent visit to Baku.
Noting that he held a number of meetings and spoke at the Diplomatic Academy in Azerbaijan, Fule mentioned that the potential of EU and Azerbaijan cooperation is still unusable.
Speaking of the prospects of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement process, Fule noted that EU’s closely involvement is more possible in other problematic regions - the Balkans rather than in Nagorno-Karabakh.
"We have already formed the OSCE Minsk Group for mediation in Karabakh talks, in order to negotiate over the formulated "Madrid principles," he said.
However, according to the Commissioner, this does not mean that the EU does not wish to strengthen its role in support of the negotiations. "Secondly, we are more and more often get involved in the process of building trust between the parties," he said.
"We hope that this trust will create a conducive atmosphere for a peace agreement," Fule said.
In addition, as the Commissioner noted, EU is trying to achieve not only a bilaterally trust between Azerbaijan and Armenia, but also by bringing them to diverse programs in the framework of "Strategic Partnership".
"We also try to build mutual confidence not only between the representatives of countries but also the peoples of both countries. This is very important issue, and the European Union is still engaged to this important area of peace building process between the parties," said Fule.
The presidential elections in Azerbaijan are scheduled in October this year. Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev plans to run for a third term.
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