Int'l community urged to end Armenia's impunity for crimes
Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept.27
Azerbaijan urged internatinal community to end Armenia's impunity for crimes committed against the civilian population of Azerbaijan, minister of foreign affairs of Azerbaijan Elmar Mammadyarov said in his adress at the General Debate of the Sixty-Ninth Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
According to him, violence and fragility remain the largest obstacles to the development. The world community is still facing serious breaches of the fundamental norms and principles of international law. Peoples throughout the world continue to suffer from devastating wars, aggression, military occupation and ethnic cleansing.
"For more than twenty years, Armenia has been using force against the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Azerbaijan. It has occupied around 20% of the territories of Azerbaijan and conducted ethnic cleansing against almost one million Azerbaijanis, as a result of which no single Azerbaijani is left in Armenia or in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan. No single Azerbaijani historic and cultural monument escaped destruction in the occupied territories and in Armenia", - he added.
Mammadyarov also add, in 1993, the United Nations Security Council adopted four resolutions that reaffirm the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and the inadmissibility of the use of force for the acquisition of territory.
"The resolutions demand the immediate, complete and unconditional withdrawal of the Armenian occupying forces from all the occupied territories of Azerbaijan. Further, the United Nations General Assembly, Non-Aligned Movement, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and numerous other regional organizations adopted various decisions supporting the sovereignty, political independence and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and demanded settlement of the conflict based on these principles", Azerbaijani FM said.
Unfortunately, Armenia disregards all the aforementioned resolutions and the generally accepted norms and principles of international law and continues military occupation of Azerbaijani lands, he added.
"Armenia regularly violates the ceasefire and deliberately attacks Azerbaijani civilians, which results in the killings and woundings of inhabitants residing near the front line. Just recently, several Azerbaijani civilians visiting the graveyards of their relatives in the occupied territories were taken hostage and tortured, some of them even killed by Armenian forces. It is therefore critical that the international community play a more proactive role in ending impunity for the crimes committed against the civilian population of Azerbaijan. Combating impunity is important to ensure sustainable peace and reconciliation", Mammadyarov said.
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 four U.N. Security Council resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.