Over 50 French politicians call for abandoning new gas deal with Baku

Over 50 French politicians call for abandoning new gas deal with Baku
Update: 31 July 2022 19:34
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French politicians of various affiliations have signed a letter urging the European Commission to abandon a gas deal with Azerbaijan, and called on country officials not to ratify the deal

Over 50 French politicians signed a transpartisan letter to warn the European Union about a recently made gas deal with Azerbaijan and urge officials of the European Commission and EU members to abandon the deal.

In their letter, published in French daily Le Monde, they argue that an agreement with Baku would simply substitute Europe's dependence on Russian gas, leading to a new dependency on Azerbaijan, and reinforce Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev's "dictatorship."

Noting that Ursula von der Leyen, the President of the European Commission, announced in mid July a new agreement to double Azerbaijani gas imports, so as to diversify the European Union's supply sources, the politicians said in their letter:

"It is an understatement to say that this announcement is frightening, for anyone who knows how the dictatorship that heads Azerbaijan uses the proceeds of its gas revenues. Not only is it ruled, for the past three decades, by the same caste of people that indulges in every possible human rights abuse, but it is also desperately seeking to finance arms being used to exterminate Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh and in the Republic of Armenia. Additionally, the Azerbaijani solution is rooted in the past, as it contradicts the European Union's commitments to the energy transition and its demands for a more sovereign energy policy."

They continued:

"This is why we urge the European Commission to abandon this project with Azerbaijan, just as we ask the heads of state and government of the European Union and the European Parliament not to ratify, under any circumstances, an agreement that would substitute the dependence on Russian gas with Azerbaijani gas."

They added:

"The 44-day war in the autumn of 2020 revealed Azerbaijan's appalling plans. Its military strength was backed by Turkey's transport of jihadists to serve as auxiliaries to the Azerbaijani army. President Emmanuel Macron criticized not only the use of phosphorus bombs, which are strictly forbidden due to the human and ecological disasters they generate, but also the torture of prisoners of war held in Azerbaijani jails, with total disregard for international conventions."