On 23 January 2023, the European Council agreed to establish a civilian European Union Mission in Armenia (EUMA) under the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP). The objective of the Mission is to contribute to stability in the border areas of Armenia, build confidence on the ground, and ensure an environment conducive to normalisation efforts between Armenia and Azerbaijan supported by the EU.
“The establishment of an EU Mission in Armenia launches a new phase in the EU’s engagement in the South Caucasus. The EU will continue to support de-escalation efforts and is committed to working closely with both sides towards the ultimate goal of sustainable peace in the region”, stated Josep Borrell, the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.
On 27 December 2022, the Foreign Minister of Armenia invited the EU to deploy a civilian CSDP mission in Armenia. In response to Armenia’s request, EUMA will conduct routine patrolling and report on the situation, which will strengthen the EU’s understanding of the situation on the ground. The Mission will also contribute to the mediation efforts in the framework of the process led by President of the European Council Charles Michel.
EUMA will have an initial mandate of two years, and its Operational Headquarters will be in Armenia. The Civilian Operation Commander will be Stefano Tomat, European External Action Service’s (EEAS) Managing Director of the Civilian Planning and Conduct Capability (CPCC). A Head of Mission leading operations on the ground will be appointed in the near future.