Baku, Azerbaijan, July 15
By Seba Aghayeva - Trend:
Armenia which pursues a policy of vandalism against Azerbaijan's historical material and cultural heritage on occupied Azerbaijani lands and on its own territory has no moral, cultural, political or legal right to host UNESCO conference on the cultural policy, Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hikmet Hajiyev said.
He was commenting on holding a regional conference "Cultural Policy and Policy for Culture" in Armenia under the auspices of UNESCO.
Speaking at the conference, Armenian representative said that disrespect for culture of other nations is "cultural genocide" and thereby indeed, he assessed the policy of his own country against the material and cultural heritage of Azerbaijani people, said Hajiyev.
"As a result of Armenian aggression against Azerbaijan, 927 libraries, nine mosques, 44 shrines, 464 historical monuments and museums, over 40,000 museum pieces were looted, destroyed and crushed on the occupied territories," said the spokesperson.
He added that namely as a result of the "cultural policy" pursued by Armenia, a bag made of silver from Lachin museum was sold for $80,000 at Sotheby's auction in London.
The material, cultural and religious heritage of Azerbaijani people on Azerbaijan's historical lands on Armenia's territory was also damaged as a result of the "cultural genocide" policy which the Armenian representative was talking about, said Hajiyev.
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 US are currently holding peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the UN Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.
Edited by SI
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