It is great injustice that Azerbaijani IDPs can’t visit their homelands (PHOTO)

Baku, Azerbaijan, March 11

By Elchin Mehdiyev - Trend:

It is a great injustice that Azerbaijani internally displaced persons (IDPs) can not visit their homelands, Britain's Ambassador to Azerbaijan, Irfan Siddiq believes.

International organizations that need to demonstrate resoluteness in settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, are continuing a double standards policy, the chairman of Nagorno-Karabakh's Azerbaijani community, Bayram Safarov said at a meeting with the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office's counsellor on the conflicts in South Caucasus, Christopher Joyce and British Ambassador to Azerbaijan Irfan Siddiq.

Safarov said the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict should be resolved in accordance with international law, and with the conditions that the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan will be secured. Azerbaijan expects support of its position from both the UK and other major powers and organizations.

Ambassador Siddiq, in turn, said it is a great injustice that IDPs have been for 22 years unable to return to their homelands in Nagorno-Karabakh and adjacent areas.

The ambassador also stressed that the peaceful settlement of the conflict within Azerbaijan's territorial integrity is a mandatory term in this issue.

Azerbaijani MPs Rovshan Rzayev and Elman Mammadov spoke during the meeting about the conditions created by the Azerbaijani government for the IDPs.

Mammadov urged the OSCE Minsk Group, the EU, the UN and other international organizations to be decisive in the conflict's settlement.

The chairman of the community's coordinating council Orkhan Akbarov stressed in his speech that the Armenian government's position creates obstacles to conflict resolution and community meetings.

Joyce, in turn, said it is important to organize meetings between the communities in the settlement of this conflict.

"The Azerbaijani community has a desire to organize meetings on this issue. Therefore, we will try to organize a meeting between the two communities," Joyce said.

The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 per cent of Azerbaijan since 1992, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.

Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Russia, France and the U.S. are currently holding peace negotiations.

Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.

Translated by E.A.

Edited by C.N.

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