Armenia earns profit from extraction of precious metals in occupied Azerbaijani lands
Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 17
By Matanat Nasibova - Trend:
Armenia’s aggression policy causes great damage to Azerbaijan in all spheres, including the economic and environmental ones, Zakir Ibrahimov, chairman of the board of AzerGold CJSC, told Trend Nov. 17 on the sidelines of the international conference entitled “Illegal activity in the occupied Azerbaijani territories and the responsibility of third parties” in Baku.
He noted that a report was prepared regarding illegal activities in the occupied Azerbaijani territories, and was sent to the country’s Prosecutor General’s Office.
He said that the process initiated by AzerGold CJSC to bring to justice Armenian companies, individuals and officials, as well as foreign companies related to the production of non-ferrous metals and operating in the occupied Azerbaijani territories, particularly in Nagorno-Karabakh region, was continued by the Prosecutor General’s Office of Azerbaijan.
“Non-ferrous metals [in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan] have been mined for more than a decade,” he noted. “The huge multimillion-dollar revenues of Armenian companies are registered in the so-called Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (NKR), this allows to carry out huge financial transfers to the budget of the so-called NKR, as well as to the budget of Armenia.”
That is, the Armenian budget receives tax revenues and financial contributions at the expense of the profits from the sale of precious metals from the occupied Azerbaijani territories, he added.
“Naturally, Armenia’s occupation policy, its aggression against Azerbaijan lies in the core of all this,” Ibrahimov stressed.
The investigation carried out by the Prosecutor General’s Office of Azerbaijan revealed that managers of the Vallex Group, Base Metals, ACP, Lerna Metalurgiayi Institute, Teghout and other companies registered in Armenia and other countries, as well as individuals, repeatedly illegally crossed Azerbaijan’s state border from Armenia, and created facilities together with other persons in the occupied territories.
It was established that they also received illegal income from the extraction of a large quantity of gold and other non-ferrous metals at the fields in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan’s Kalbajar district, the fields of Zangilan, Tartar district and other fields.
During the investigation, using the high-definition imagery of the Azersky satellite of Azerkosmos OJSC and the geological survey data, the facts of conducting illegal mining operations at ore deposits located in Azerbaijan’s occupied territories were proved.
Regarding these facts, the Azerbaijani Prosecutor General’s Office launched a criminal case under articles 192.2.3 (illegal entrepreneurship) and 318.2 (illegal crossing of Azerbaijan’s state border).
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 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.