Q&A EU Monitoring Capacity to Armenia

25.10.2022 EEAS Press Team

Following the 17 October 2022 decision by the European Union to temporarily deploy monitoring experts along the Armenian side of the international border with Azerbaijan, the EU Monitoring Capacity in Armenia completed its mandate on 19 December after two months of operation. Here are some facts about the mission.

Why was the EU sending a Monitoring Capacity to Armenia?

The EU Monitoring Capacity responded to the agreement reached at the quadrilateral meeting between President Aliyev, Prime Minister Pashinyan, French President Macron and President of the European Council Michel. Upon proposal of the High Representative Josep Borrell, the decision on the setting up of the EU Monitoring Capacity in Armenia was taken at the Foreign Affairs Council on 17 October. The first EU monitors were operational on the ground as of 20 October. The mission’s mandate was to monitor the situation on the Armenian side of the internationally recognised border between Armenia and Azerbaijan in order to support confidence building between the two countries, and allow the EU to better support the work of the border commissions.

What exactly was the EU Monitoring Capacity doing in Armenia?

The EU Monitoring Capacity in Armenia carried out two core tasks:

1) Contributed to stabilisation between Armenia and Azerbaijan;

2) through regular and ad-hoc reporting the EU team monitored the situation on the Armenian side of the internationally recognised border between Armenia and Azerbaijan. This allowed the EU to better support the work of the two parties’ border commissions.

Where exactly was the Monitoring Capacity deployed?

The area of responsibility (AoR) was the Armenian side of the internationally recognised border between Armenia and Azerbaijan.

What did the EU Monitoring Capacity achieve? 

40 EU civilian monitoring experts were deployed for a period of two months. The EU monitors have conducted more than 175 patrols on the Armenian side of the internationally recognised border between Armenia and Azerbaijan.

Through objective monitoring, analysing and reporting to the EU on the situation on the ground, they have contributed to the stabilisation of the situation between the two countries and allowed the EU to better support the work of the border commissions.

What was the role of EUMM Georgia in the deployment of the EU Monitoring Capacity in Armenia?

In order to ensure a swift deployment of the EU Monitoring Capacity, EU monitoring experts from the European Union Monitoring Mission in Georgia (EUMM Georgia) were deployed. The EUMM took operational steps so that its monitoring capacity in Georgia was not impacted. EUMM continues to carry out its activities in Georgia in all lines of operation. This includes a 24/7, 365 days a year monitoring presence along the Administrative Boundary Lines, to ensure stability in Georgia and the wider region. EUMM Georgia remains dedicated to fully implement its mandate.

Was the EU Monitoring Capacity the only way the EU is supporting the de-escalation between Armenia and Azerbaijan?

Based on the agreement by Armenia and Azerbaijan, the EU is closely involved in leading a peace process between both sides. To date, President of the European Council (PEC) Charles Michel has hosted four trilateral leaders’ meetings in Brussels between and the Armenian and Azerbaijani leaders in the past year. The first of these was held on 14 December 2021, which resulted in Azerbaijan’s release of 10 Armenian prisoners, as well as agreements on a way forward in working towards a peace process. Subsequent meetings took place on 6 April 2022, 22 May 2022 and 31 August 2022. High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice President (HRVP) Josep Borrell has been engaged through regular contacts with the Foreign Ministers of both sides. Meetings have also taken place between Armenia’s Security Council Secretary Armen Grigoryan and Azerbaijan’s Presidential Adviser Hikmet Hajiyev, hosted in Brussels by the EU Special Representative (EUSR) Toivo Klaar and PEC Adviser Magdalena Grono. EUSR Klaar has also held frequent in person consultations with the leaderships of both sides, in line with his mandate and the tasking received from HRVP Borrell.

What are the reasons for not extending EUMCAP’s mandate?

In accordance with the quadrilateral agreement reached by the leaders of Armenia, Azerbaijan, European Council and France in Prague on 6 October 2022, EUMCAP was deployed to Armenia for a maximum of two months. 

The EU honoured this commitment and the capacity completed its activities on 19 December 2022. For more information about the next steps, see: https://nsl.consilium.europa.eu/dg/l/104100/jof3za6wz2bgalelea7nygkdprghghepvla2qwvuhtukrdnnwymm4z264ftrm4i5zp4flpt36hkig/hn4jxk5kkkppwunjaiqqyiow5e  

Peter Stano
Lead Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
+32 (0)460 75 45 53
Paloma Hall Caballero
Press Officer for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
+32 (0)2 296 85 60
+32 (0)460 76 85 60