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French Mayors to appeal court decisions on revoking agreements with Artsakh

Hasmik Martirosyan
Public Radio of Armenia
The Mayors of the French cities of Valence, Bourg-les-Valence, Bourg-de-Péage and Arnouville intend to maintain friendly relations with the people of Artsakh, despite the administrative courts’ decisions to revoke the friendship agreements with Artsakh cities.
The friendship between the French and Artsakh cities will get a boost following the courts’ decisions, Artsakh’s Representative to France Hovhannes Gevorgyan told Public Radio of Armenia.
According to him, on these days the political circles in France – MPs, Mayors and Senators – are offering support to the Artsakh authorities, saying that the friendship is irrevocable.
Gevorgyan said the Mayors are preparing to appeal the court verdicts, which have been made based on the fact that Artsakh has not been recognized by France, and only the country’s president and government are authorized to sign agreements.
“There have been many cases, when verdicts of first instance courts have been revoked,” the Permanent Representative said. He added that “the fact is that there is great unity and solidarity in France following the court decisions.”
Hovhannes Grigoryan does not rule out that the decisions could be a result of Azerbaijani lobbying and corruption, as Baku’s activity has always been targeted at isolating Artsakh.
French-Armenian political scientist Gaidz Minassian also considers that the revoking of the agreements could be a result of pressure from Azerbaijan.
According to him, as an OSCE Minsk Group co-chairing country, France thus wants to show its balanced stance and “neutrality,” as Baku has been declaring from different podiums that a co-chairing country cannot sign declarations of friendship with an unrecognized country.
Gaidz Minassian sees an economic component, as well, since France and Azerbaijan are good trade partners.
“With this decision France sends a signal to Baku regarding the perspectives of economic cooperation and access to new markets,” he told Public Radio of Armenia.

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