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Azerbaijan FA chief insists Arsenal star Henrikh Mkhitaryan is safe to play in Europa League final

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'We have had Armenian athletes come to Baku for the last decade without issue': Azerbaijan FA chief insists Arsenal star Henrikh Mkhitaryan is safe to play in Europa League final against Chelsea despite ongoing political tensionsAzerbaijan FA assured Henrikh Mkhitaryan he can play in Europa League finalArsenal play Chelsea in final on May 29 but Armenian Mkhitaryan was a doubt Armenia and Azerbaijan have had no diplomatic relations since  the 1980sMkhitaryan did not play in Europa League qualifier at Qarabag in October

The Azerbaijan FA have confirmed Arsenal winger Henrikh Mkhitaryan will be free to play in the Europa League final against Chelsea at Baku Olympic Stadium on May 29 despite ongoing political tensions with Armenia.

Azerbaijan and Armenia have had no diplomatic relations since the Nagorno-Karabakh War, which ended in 1994, and Mkhiatryan missed the Gunners' Europa League qualifier against Qarabag in Baku in October over safety fears.

AFFA general secretary Elkhan Mammadov confirmed that all necessary documentation had been filed to allow Mkhitaryan into the country and insisted that politics and sport should remain separate.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan is a doubt to play for Arsenal against Chelsea in Europa League final

Mammadov said: 'Certainly we have been discussing this issue. Our state authorities have provided all of the guarantee letters to UEFA in accordance to the request from UEFA and Arsenal.

'Actually this was a part of the process prioritised when Arsenal qualified that has been discussed with UEFA. All the necessary documentation and safety and security from the state has been provided.

'There will not be any problem for Henrikh Mkhitaryan to travel to Baku.'

Mammadov also admitted he was surprised this remained an issue, with Arsenal still uncertain over whether their player will travel, 

Azerbaijan and Armenia have had no diplomatic relations for more than 20 years

Mammadov added: 'To be honest with you I am surprised this case is still ongoing in the press and the public and England because we are taking this as a done subject because we have provided all of the necessary documentation

'Arsenal representatives have been in Baku they have spoken to us and UEFA about it

'When they played Qarabag last year, the same guarantees had been implemented that time but the decision of the coach was not bring him because of injury or something.

'We have had Amenian athletes come to Baku for the last decade without issue.

'Sport is aside from politics, it is completely separate. That's why for us Henrik Mkhitaryan has all rights to play in the final.'

Mkhitaryan missed his side's Europa League victory over Qarabag in Baku in October

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