Azerbaijan warns of impending provocation on border with Georgia
04 June 2020

In a highly unusual statement, the State Border Service of Azerbaijan issued a warning about an impending border violation by Georgia citizens.

"On June 4, information was received that a group of Georgian citizens would commit provocative actions violating the state border on the territory of the "Keshikchidag" State Historical and Cultural Reserve on the Azerbaijani-Georgian state border. The Georgian Border Guard has been officially informed about the information received", the Press Center of the State Border Service told Azerbaijani media. The State Border Service officially states that any provocation on the state border will be resolutely prevented, and the organizers of the provocation will be responsible for the possible consequences", it added.

There have been in the past incidents near the David Gareji Monastery Complex which straddles the border, and which is considered a holy site by the Georgian Orthodox Church. It is located on the Iori plateau near the border of Georgia and Azerbaijan. It includes the complex of 19 Medieval monasteries with approximately 5 000 cells for monks.

Parts of the Georgia-Azerbaijan border remain contested, and discussions between the two governments to delineate the border appear to have made little progress in the last years.

Georgia and Azerbaijan have generally had good relations since regaining their independence in 1991, but the border issues are among a number of topics that cause tensions, and there are concerns that some elements may be trying to provoke incidents.

source; with agencies

photo: David Gareji Monastery complex (archive picture)