The European Partnership for the Peaceful Settlement of the Conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh: Progress and prospects
The European Partnership for the Peaceful Settlement of the Conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh (EPNK) is a European civil society initiative which seeks to work with local partners in the South Caucasus on a wide range of programmes and projects to positively impact the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement process.
The partnership builds on previous work that its five member organisations carried out in this field, individually or in groups, such as the Consortium Initiative (2003–2009). The members of the partnership are: Conciliation Resources, Crisis Management Initiative, International Alert, Kvinna till Kvinna and the London Information Network on Conflicts and State Building.
EPNK activities, which are funded by the European Union, started in June 2010. The period since has been one of the most challenging in the context of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement process. The peace process itself, under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group, has so far been unable to achieve a long-expected and much hoped for breakthrough. The rhetoric coming from both government and societies across the conflict divide has been increasingly polarised and highly charged, making the work of EPNK more and more difficult.
Nonetheless, the partnership has been able to maintain a dynamic dialogue between a wide range of Armenian and Azerbaijani policymakers, media and civil society actors – including relevant activists in and from Nagorno-Karabakh itself. This has contributed to mutual understanding and confidence building – essential ingredients for any sustainable peaceful resolution of the conflict.