The French MFA says that these comments do not change its position in any way.
The French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs reacted to the speech of the President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev at the meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) in Astana on October 14.
Referring to French President Emmanuel Macron’s interview on “France 2” TV channel, Ilham Aliyev said that Azerbaijan was waging a war on its internationally recognized territory:
“Karabakh has been recognized by the whole world as a part of Azerbaijan. We used the right of self-defense to restore our territorial integrity by force. Macron declared that France will never abandon Armenia. However, as they say, this is a matter of bilateral relations.”
Aliyev added that, in his opinion, despite the fact that Azerbaijan agreed to hold a quadrilateral meeting, including the participation of the French President, France has nothing to do with the relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia.
The French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, Catherine Colonna, believes that these comments do not in any way change the position of France. According to her, the country fully supports progress towards peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan:
“Thanks to the commitment of the French President, it was possible to hold a quadrilateral meeting with Charles Michel, President Aliyev and Prime Minister Pashinyan outside the framework of the first summit of the European Political Union on October 6. As stated in the acknowledgment received on this occasion, this meeting made it possible to move towards the goal. On the other hand, France fully supports the process started with the EU to enable negotiations on a peace treaty between the two countries”, stated Colonna.
France is one of the three co-chairing countries of the OSCE Minsk Group, together with Russia and the United States. The group began its activities on January 1, 1997 with the objective of achieving a peace agreement after the end of the 1992 Nagorno-Karabakh War between Azerbaijan and Armenia.