Baku, Azerbaijan, July 16
By Ilkin Izzet - Trend:
Families of Azerbaijanis, taken hostage by Armenians in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan have officially appealed to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Ilaha Huseynova, Head of ICRC Baku Office Communication Department told Trend on July 16.
Ilaha Huseynova said that currently the ICRC continues talks with the parties on this matter.
Earlier, it was reported that Azerbaijan appealed to the ICRC to clarify the media reports on the capture of Azerbaijani citizens as hostage by the Armenian side.
The appeal contained a request to carry out the necessary procedures in accordance with the ICRC's mandate, in case if the information is confirmed.
Earlier, the Armenian media said that the special forces of Armenia detained two Azerbaijanis in the Shaplar village of Kalbajar District - Shahbaz Guliyev and Dilgam Askarov.
On July 15, Azerbaijani State Commission on Prisoners of War, Hostages and Missing People said the fate of Azerbaijani citizens taken hostages in the Kalbajar District, is its priority.
Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry dismissed the information on the affiliation of the mentioned persons to the country's armed forces.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan.
As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
The two countries 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.
Edited by S.I.