VIENNE, FRANCE — Mayor of the French city of Vienne Thierry Kovacs has ordered the removal of the Ukrainian flag from the pediment of the administration building after Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s statement about cooperation with Azerbaijan, Dauphiné libéré reports.

“You cannot refer to Western values and on this basis call on the West for help, while sharing the vision of the regime – the initiator of ethnic cleansing in Nagorno-Karabakh. This form of support for the Azerbaijani dictator is unacceptable. The removal (of the flag. — Ed.) does not in any way detract from the support that Vienne provides to the Ukrainian people,” the publication quotes the mayor as saying.

Zelensky said in a tweet on October 4 that he had a call with Aliyev and thanked him for Azerbaijan’s “significant humanitarian assistance, particularly in the energy sector as winter approaches.”

According to Kovacs, one cannot thank Baku for humanitarian aid, particularly in the energy sector, while Azerbaijan “sells gas at one and a half times the price to finance its military efforts against Armenia.”

On September 19, Azerbaijan launched a military offensive against Nagorno-Karabakh, which left hundreds of Armenians killed and thousands of others displaced. On September 20, the authorities of Nagorno-Karabakh agreed to a ceasefire on Azerbaijan’s terms, including the dissolution of the Defense Army. On September 18, President of the Republic of Artsakh Samvel Shahramanyan signed a decree, according to which the Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) will cease to exist by January 1, 2024. As of 1 October, 100,625 displaced residents have already fled Nagorno-Karabakh and reached Armenia.

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