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Archive for Azerbaijan

Newsline: Azerbaijan evacuates embassy in Iran

Azerbaijan evacuates embassy staff and family members from Iran on Sunday, the foreign ministry said, two days after a gunman shot dead a security guard and wounded two other people in an attack Baku branded an “act of terrorism”. After the attack, the Azeri foreign ministry said it summoned Iran’s ambassador in Baku to demand justice and would evacuate embassy staff from Tehran. It gave no further details, including whether the embassy would continue to function. Earlier, the ministry said the shooting was the result of Tehran failing to heed its calls for better security. (https://neuters.de/world/middle-east/azerbaijan-evacuate-embassy-iran-sunday-after-fatal-shooting-2023-01-29/) Police in Tehran have said they had arrested a suspect and Iranian authorities condemned Friday’s incident, but said the gunman appeared to have had a personal, not a political, motive. Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi called for “a comprehensive investigation” of the incident and sent his condolences to Azerbaijan and the dead man’s family, state media said. The incident came amid increased tensions between the neighbouring countries over Iran’s treatment of its large ethnic Azeri minority and over Azerbaijan’s decision this month to appoint its first ever ambassador to Israel.

Newsline: Iran fatal embassy shooting sparks Azerbaijan’s protests

Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry responded strongly to the attack, summoning Iran’s ambassador in Baku to demand justice and saying it would evacuate its embassy staff from Tehran. It said an “anti-Azerbaijani campaign” in Iran had contributed to the attack and accused Tehran of long ignoring its appeals to boost embassy security. “Unfortunately, the latest bloody terrorist act demonstrates the serious consequences of the failure to give the necessary attention to our constant appeals in this regard,” it said. “The attacker broke through the guard post, killing the head of security with a Kalashnikov assault rifle,” Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry said. Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian, quoted on a government site, said that based on evidence and initial observations the gunman’s motive was “completely personal”. “Necessary security measures have been taken to continue normal activities at the embassy and diplomats of the Republic of Azerbaijan in Tehran,” he said. Amirabdollahian later told Azeri Foreign Minister Jayran Bairamov in a phone call that he hoped the attack would not damage bilateral ties. A gunman shot dead a security guard and wounded two other people at Azerbaijan’s embassy in Iran on Friday, in an attack Baku branded an “act of terrorism” that it said was the result of Tehran failing to heed its calls for improved security. Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev demanded swift punishment for those involved in Friday’s “act of terrorism”. (https://neuters.de/world/asia-pacific/guard-killed-shooting-azerbaijans-embassy-iran-2023-01-27/) Azerbaijan, a secular Muslim former Soviet republic, has friendly ties with the United States and Israel and has had difficult diplomatic relations with Iran.

Newsline: Head of security at Azerbaijan’s embassy in Iran killed in shooting

A security official was killed and two people were wounded when a shooter opened fire at Azerbaijan’s embassy in Iran, Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry said on Friday. “The attacker broke through the guard post, killing the head of security with a Kalashnikov assault rifle,” it said. The suspect entered the embassy with two young children and may have been motivated by “personal issues”, Iran’s semi-official Tasnim news agency reported, citing the police chief. (https://neuters.de/world/asia-pacific/guard-killed-shooting-azerbaijans-embassy-iran-2023-01-27/) Video shared on social media showed what appeared to be broken glass and damage to a door inside the embassy building. Police in Tehran said they have arrested a suspect and are investigating the motive behind the attack.

Newsline: Azerbaijan summons Dutch Ambassador

Ambassador of the Netherlands to Azerbaijan Pauline Eizema was summoned to the Azerbaijani Ministry of Foreign Affairs on November 25, the ministry told Trend. During the meeting, the ambassador was briefed on the ministry’s dissatisfaction with the letter of Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands Wopke Hoekstra, addressed to the Dutch Parliament on November 23, over alleged war crimes committed by the Azerbaijani Army. (https://en.trend.az/azerbaijan/politics/3673514.html) The ambassador was told that the Armenia-planted landmines on Azerbaijan’s lands come as a vivid example of continuing Armenian war crimes against Azerbaijanis.

Newsline: Azerbaijan to become first Shi’ite Muslim country with embassy in Israel

Azerbaijan is set to become the first Shi’ite Muslim-majority state to open an embassy in Israel, following parliamentary approval on Friday. Prime Minister Yair Lapid praised the decision, calling Azerbaijan “an important partner of Israel and home to one of the largest Jewish communities in the Muslim world. “The decision to open an embassy reflects the depth of the relations between the countries,” Lapid added. “This move is the fruit of efforts by the Israeli government to build strong diplomatic bridges with the Muslim world.” (https://www.jpost.com/israel-news/article-722774) The new embassy, which The Jerusalem Post reported was in the works last month, will be in Tel Aviv, where the country already has a Tourism Office and a Trade Representative Office. Israel and Azerbaijan have had relations for 30 years, and there has been an Israeli embassy in Baku since 1993.

Newsline: Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry summons Iranian ambassador

Iranian ambassador to Azerbaijan Seyyed Abbas Mousavi was summoned to the Azerbaijani Ministry of Foreign Affairs. During the meeting, the ambassador was conveyed the dissatisfaction and concern regarding the alleged recent propaganda against the Republic of Azerbaijan in the Iranian media and the comments by the Iranian officials. The Azeri said also called on Iran to hand over criminals and alleged separatists. (https://en.mehrnews.com/news/193521/Azerbaijani-Foreign-Ministry-summons-Iranian-ambassador) The move came a day after the Iranian Foreign Ministry summoned the ambassador of Azerbaijan to protest the continuation of anti-Iran propaganda and media misinformation about the Islamic Republic by the country’s officials and media.

Newsline: Azerbaijan to open embassy in Israel

Azerbaijan has decided to open an embassy in Israel, after 30 years of relations between the two countries and amid tensions with neighboring Iran, local media reported. “The decision has already been made, the opening of the Azerbaijani embassy in Israel can only be delayed for technical reasons,” Arzu Naghiyev, an MP and member of the Azerbaijan-Israel parliamentary friendship group, told the Azerbaijani news site Pravda. He pointed out that the two countries have very good relations, despite the absence of an embassy. (https://www.i24news.tv/en/news/israel/diplomacy/1667313067-azerbaijan-to-open-embassy-in-israel) Israel and Azerbaijan enjoy close relations, especially in defense matters, as 69 percent of Azerbaijan’s arms imports between 2016 and 2020 came from Israel.

Newsline: Iran opens consulate in Armenia’s southernmost region to counter Azerbaijan and Turkey

Iran has opened a consulate general in Kapan, located in the southernmost Armenian province of Syunik, in what appears to be a direct message to Azerbaijan and its backer Turkey. Iranian foreign minister Hossein Amirabdollahian officially inaugurated the consulate on Friday, making Iran the first country to establish a diplomatic mission in the province that is sought by Baku and Ankara. The move appeared to come in support of Tehran’s assertion that any changes in its borders and transit links with Armenia would be a “red line” that it would not tolerate being crossed. (https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2022/10/22/iran-opens-consulate-in-armenias-kapan-to-deliver-a-message) Azerbaijan – which also has a border with Iran – and its ally Turkey wish to establish a new transport link connecting Azerbaijan’s exclave of Nakhchivan with the Azerbaijani mainland, a route they call the “Zangezur corridor”. If the route is established, in effect bypassing Armenian checkpoints, it will have consequences for Iran-Armenia commerce and could sever a major Iranian transit link with the South Caucasus.

Newsline: French police arrest Azerbaijani embassy attacker

Police in France have arrested an attacker on the Azerbaijani embassy in Paris, Azernews reported. Police in Paris arrested Loris Toufanian, the former chairman of the youth branch of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation of the Dashnaktsutyun in France, who in 2015 became one of the founders of the dissident group Charjoum. The arrest is likely due to a violent protest against the Azerbaijani embassy’s cultural center. (https://www.azernews.az/karabakh/201114.html) In September this year, an Armenian radical group attacked the cultural center of the Azerbaijani embassy in Paris. Armenians outside the building threw paint at the cultural center and were only removed from the scene by the police intervention.

Newsline: Azerbaijan summons US envoy after shots fired at embassy vehicle in Washington

A vehicle of the Azerbaijani Embassy came under fire in Washington, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said. The attack took place between the night of Oct. 10 and early hours of Oct. 11, according to the ministry. The ministry said it summoned the US charge d’affaires in Azerbaijan and expressed “serious concern and dissatisfaction over the incident.” After the attack, the embassy immediately contacted relevant US authorities and provided them surveillance footage, the statement said. Azerbaijan “strongly condemns the criminal acts based on hatred of radical forces in foreign countries directed against Azerbaijani diplomatic missions, diplomats and their property, and demands that the institutions responsible for preventing such provocations in their respective countries approach their duties with full responsibility,” it said. (https://worldbulletin.dunyabulteni.net/world/azerbaijan-says-shots-fired-at-embassy-vehicle-in-washington-h214891.html) Systematic attacks on Azerbaijani diplomatic missions by “radical members” of Armenian communities, including “acts of vandalism” in Washington, Paris, Beirut and other cities, is of serious concern, the ministry said.