Experts reflect on backfire effect of European Parliament's anti-Azerbaijani attacks
    Caliber.Az conversation with Ishmukhamedov, Apkhaidze

    INTERVIEWS  02 March 2024 - 17:17

    Vadim Mansurov

    This week, the European Parliament once again lashed out against Azerbaijan by adopting a report entitled "On the Implementation of the Common Security and Defence Policy", which presents distorted facts concerning our country. Undoubtedly, this report is part of a smear campaign against Azerbaijan.

    Why do EU institutions continue their confrontation policy with Baku? Caiber.Az put this question to a group of foreign political experts.

    According to Kazakh political scientist Sharip Ishmukhamedov, MEPs have long been known for their commitment and populism. They regularly come up with proposals to impose sanctions and other unjustifiably harsh measures, which often end up hurting the EU countries themselves; the unjustified wrath of these figures fell on Poland and Hungary at the time.

    "We well remember that these attacks often hit the countries of Central Asia: Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan. We can confidently say that such actions of MEPs will in no way lead to peace and security in the South Caucasus, but it seems that those who take them do not think about it at all. Thank God and fortunately, there are many reasonable and adequate specialists working within the apparatus of the European Union and its structures, who do not agree with these ill-considered statements. The fact is that today Azerbaijan is an important economic and political partner of the EU. Azerbaijan's energy resources supply Europe, making it independent of other suppliers. At the same time, Azerbaijan is an important logistical transit point between the Central Asian countries and China on the one hand and Europe on the other, so any sanctions will hit European interests first. Only an extremely unintelligent person can fail to understand these obvious things," Ishmukhamedov said.

    According to Shota Apkhaidze, a Georgian political scientist, expert at the Russian Financial University and director of the Centre for Islamic Studies of the Caucasus, the European Parliament's attacks on Azerbaijan are simply madness.

    "Imposing sanctions on Azerbaijan against the background of anti-Russian sanctions, when Baku is diversifying Russian energy supplies to the EU, is pure madness. It is not Azerbaijan that needs help, but the EU that needs help from Baku. Azerbaijan will not suffer and will not lose anything from these sanctions if they are adopted. Azerbaijan is in no way dependent on the West. At the same time, it should be borne in mind that if sanctions are imposed, it will be primarily Western companies that will suffer, as they are heavily represented in Azerbaijan, especially in the oil and gas sector," Apkhaidze said.

    Increasing the size of the EU mission in Armenia is another absurd point.

    "I have always considered the idea of establishing an EU mission in Armenia as provocative. It will only cause unhealthy tensions in the region and hinder peace. All intelligent people understand this," the political analyst noted.

    As for the European Parliament's call for the EU to end its partnership relations with Azerbaijan, the Georgian political analyst believes that this is a call to the void.

    "While the EU executive is trying to expand cooperation with Azerbaijan, MEPs are behaving like little children, detached from reality. And it is quite obvious that the EU leadership will not listen to them. In my opinion, this is just empty talk, another populist trick by the MEPs. It is a great stupidity: the European Parliament, which wants to punish Baku, will divide Europe. The European Parliament understands very well that Europe cannot survive without Azerbaijan's energy resources. The EU seriously needs cooperation with Azerbaijan on many other issues, including political ones," Apkhaidze sums up.


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