Baku Steps Up Pressure on Yerevan to Change Armenia’s Constitution

Reiterates Claims that Armenia’s Constitution Contains Territorial Claims from Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan on Wednesday stepped up its pressure on Yerevan to change Armenia’s Constitution, saying that the document contains territorial claims from Azerbaijan.

In April, President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan said that amendment to Armenia’s Constitution were a “precondition” for Baku to the signing of a peace agreement with Yerevan.

Azerbaijan’s Foreign Minister Jeyhum Bayramov on Wednesday said those territorial claims contained within the Armenia’s Constitution were directly from Azerbaijan.

Bayramov’s remarks come a day after Armenia’s Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan told parliament that Azerbaijan’s demands for Armenia to change its constitution are not on the agenda of ongoing peace talks.

Mirzoyan said ithat both Yerevan and Baku see “obstacles to the establishment of a lasting peace” in each other’s constitutions.
“This does not mean at all that, for example, the issue of constitutional changes in Armenia is a subject of negotiations between Armenia and Azerbaijan or part of their agenda,” Mirzoyan told lawmakers on Tuesday. “There is no such thing.”

Aliyev and his government say that Armenia must remove a reference in the Constitution to Armenia’s Declaration of Independence, which calls for the reunification of Armenia and Artsakh.

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan in the past has said the language in the Declaration of Independence threatens stability in the region, advocating for changes to Armenia’s Constitution that reflect the current geopolitical realities.

“The Constitution and other legislative acts of Azerbaijan do not contain territorial claims against neighboring states, including Armenia. Therefore, attempts to draw parallels om this matter are unacceptable,” Bayramov said Wednesday, in what seemed like a direct response to Mirzoyan.

“Unfortunately, we repeatedly are seeing such tendencies. In some cases, when issues that are inconvenient for Armenia are raised in the negotiation process and attempts are being made to artificially create corollaries, even if there are no similarities in Azerbaijan,” Bayramov added.

“All international partners are aware of this, and no one accepts these arguments. I believe that the Armenian authorities themselves know that this is unfounded. The Azerbaijani society can be absolutely confident that such arguments will continue to be inapplicable, as there is no place for parallels here,” Bayramov said.

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