Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev has canceled plans to attend peace talks on Nagorno-Karabakh with Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, Bloomberg reported on Oct. 4, citing local media.
Nagorno-Karabakh, which is recognized as Azerbaijani under international law but was home to a predominantly Armenian population, surrendered on Sept. 20 after 24 hours of attacks by Azerbaijani forces.
The talks between Azerbaijan and Armenia were supposed to be held on Oct. 5 in Spain, on the sidelines of the meeting of the European Political Community in Granada.
However, Aliyev is refusing to attend due to what he believes is the "destructive position" of France and the absence of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Erdogan was invited to Granada but canceled his plans on Oct. 4 due to his "busy schedule ahead of his ruling party’s convention on Saturday," Bloomberg said.
On Oct. 3, French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna said that France was ready to provide military aid to Armenia.
"France has agreed to sign a contract with Armenia on the provision of military aid," Colonna said during a press conference in Yerevan with her Armenian counterpart, Ararat Mirzoyan.
The same day, the state-owned Azerbaijani Press Agency (APA) reported that the country's security services had arrested four former leaders of Nagorno-Karabakh and are facing criminal charges in Azerbaijan.
APA didn't mention what accusations Baku had made against them.
Over 100,000 people have arrived in Armenia from Nagorno-Karabakh, who make up 80% of the entire ethnic Armenian population of the territory.
The territory declared independence in 1991 with Yerevan's military support. Until 2020, Armenia de facto controlled Nagorno-Karabakh together with the surrounding regions.