Head of the Berlin-based European Institute for the Caucasus and Caspian Studies Matthias Dornfeldt has sent a letter of protest to President of European Parliament Martin Schulz over an anti-Azerbaijani resolution. “The European Parliament should properly assess the negative impact of the resolution on Azerbaijan,” he said in the letter.
The letter says that the European Institute for the Caucasus and Caspian Studies is doing its utmost to contribute to the development of international relations between Germany and the countries of the Caspian basin. “We are fully aware of the situation in Azerbaijan and we can say that today a positive development is seen in the fight against corruption (for example, "ASAN xidmet" centers) as well as poverty and issues related to women's rights. We express our regret in connection with the recent resolution adopted by the European Parliament on Azerbaijan.”
The letter says that reforms carried out in Azerbaijan in recent years have contributed to not only coexistence of representatives of different religions (Muslims, Christians and Jews) in peace, but also exchange of students with Western universities and companies, as well as the development of market economy in Azerbaijan. Dornfeldt says the European Parliament should be asked why the same resolution was not passed in the case of Armenia in 2008, when 10 opposition members were killed by Armenian armed forces in the presidential election. “According to Amnesty International, more than 80 political prisoners and a number of journalists were arrested then.”
He also criticized sanctions imposed on Azerbaijani civil servants, saying this can have a long-term negative impact on Azerbaijan-EU relations. “The deterioration of these relations can significantly affect the overall situation in the South Caucasus at a time when the European Union is dealing with the crises in Ukraine and Syria,” the protest letter says.
Dornfeldt also calls on the President of the European Parliament to continue dialogue with Azerbaijan, rather than breaking it.