The French Senate on Wednesday passed a resolution by an absolute majority of votes calling on the country's government to recognize the Republic of Artsakh. The document, which is advisory in nature, has been hailed both by Armenia and the Republic of Artsakh but faced strong criticism from Azerbaijan.
"During the debates held before the voting [in the Senate], State Secretary for Tourism, the French Abroad and the Francophonie Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne reiterated the French stance on this issue: France is not recognizing the self-proclaimed Republic of Artsakh," the spokesperson said on late Thursday.
"Today, we must focus on ensuring the safe return of displaced people, who had to leave their homes within the recent weeks over the conflict. The state secretary also stressed in his address to the Senate that no nations had recognized Nagorno-Karabakh so far," the spokesperson added.
Earlier this month, Yerevan and Baku agreed to a ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh, putting an end to the six-week war over the disputed area. The agreement resulted in the loss of most territories controlled by the Armenian-dominated Republic of Artsakh and envisions the deployment of 1,960 Russian peacekeepers to the region.
During the decades-long conflict, Armenia has been providing full support to the Republic of Artsakh, but without recognizing its independence.