The French Senate adopted on Wednesday a resolution that urges France’s government to recognize the Nagorno-Karabakh region as an independent republic.
305 out of 306 senators present voted for the resolution, which prompted critical remarks from Turkey and Azerbaijan.
“[The Senate] urges the French government to recognize the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic and use this recognition as a tool in the talks to establish lasting peace,” the document reads.
The Senate, according to the resolution, also calls for the immediate withdrawal of Azerbaijani forces from the territories captured in the region in the recent conflict, as well as an international investigation into war crimes and the alleged use of prohibited weapons.
It’s important to note, however, that the resolution itself does not mean that France will recognize the region as a sovereign state. Instead, it serves a symbolic purpose and acts as a gesture of support for the large Armenian community present in France.
Recently, efforts in France have been on the rise to provide aid for people escaping the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, which saw fierce fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan in September.
The clashes that lasted several weeks ended earlier in November with a ceasefire agreement brokered by Russia.
Azerbaijan called the French Senate’s resolution “provocative” and “biased.” The country’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the resolution was put forward by “a group of overtly pro-Armenian senators.”
Similarly, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said that the decision was devoid of logic and limits the possibility of France’s participation in resolving the crisis.