BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union on Monday agreed to send up to 40 experts to Armenia to help guard the border with Azerbaijan in an effort to restore peace and build trust among the old enemies.
The observation mission will be deployed for a maximum of two months. The aim is to restore some confidence at a time when a lack of security “endangers lives and jeopardizes the conflict resolution process,” the EU headquarters said in a statement.
Last month, Armenia and Azerbaijan negotiated a ceasefire to end a flare-up of fighting that killed 155 soldiers from both sides.
The EU mission will assist the work of border commissions set up earlier this year to address concerns over the demarcation of the two countries’ common border.
The ex-Soviet countries are embroiled in a decades-old conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, which is part of Azerbaijan but under the control of ethnic Armenian forces supported by Armenia since a separatist war ended there in 1994.
The idea of an EU monitoring mission was floated after the leaders of historical enemies Turkey and Armenia had their first face-to-face meeting earlier this month since the two countries agreed to improve relations.
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