Azerbaijani ministry: So-called “elections” in Nagorno-Karabakh aimed at annexation of territories occupied by Armenia
Azerbaijan, Baku, July 18 / Trend S. Agayeva /
The so-called "elections" in Nagorno-Karabakh are organized in order to camouflage the policy of Armenia aimed at annexation of the occupied territories and to promote the results of the continued occupation of the Azerbaijani territories, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said today.
The so-called "presidential elections" are being arranged to take place in the occupied Nagorno-Karabakh region of the Republic of Azerbaijan on July 19, 2012.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan reiterates in this regard that the Republic of Armenia, having occupied the Azerbaijani territories and conducted ethnic cleansing against local Azerbaijani population, has established illegal authorities in the occupied territories.
Such action, in absence of the original Azerbaijani population of the Nagorno-Karabakh region and without necessary authorization of respective structures of the Republic of Azerbaijan, gravely violates the relevant provisions of the Constitution of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the norms and principles of international law and, therefore shall have no legal effect whatsoever.
Holding legitimate elections will be possible after the withdrawal of the Armenian occupying forces, normalization of life in the region, return of expelled Azerbaijani population and creation of necessary conditions for restoration of the dialogue and cooperation between the Armenian and Azerbaijani communities of the Nagorno-Karabakh region of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said.
The Republic of Azerbaijan calls upon the Armenian side instead of its destructive illegal steps, which does not have any prospects, to withdraw its Armed Forces from the Azerbaijani territories, thus opening prospects for sustainable peace, security and development of the entire region.
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.