Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. 26
By Elchin Mehdiyev - Trend:
A petition with 100,000 votes required for recognizing Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan as a war criminal has been submitted to UN Security Council, the first deputy speaker of the Azerbaijani Parliament Ziyafat Asgarov told reporters Feb. 26.
Asgarov said that Sargsyan is one of the perpetrators of the Khojaly genocide, expressing confidence that he will face an international court.
As for the possible changes in the OSCE Minsk Group composition, Asgarov said that the current co-chairing countries - the US, Russia and France are permanent members of the UN Security Council as opposed to the proposed new members - Germany and Turkey.
"Turkey plays an important role in maintaining stability in the Caucasus," he said. "Germany also expressed support in this issue. These countries' joining the OSCE Minsk would be a good sign. But the three permanent members of the UN Security Council have failed to achieve results in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement so far. Anyway, we will hope for positive results."
Earlier, the Deputy Chairman of the OSCE PA's Committee on Political Affairs and Security, Azerbaijani MP Azay Guliyev said he plans to raise the issue of increasing the number of OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs from three countries - the US, Russia and France - to five, including Germany and Turkey at the winter session of the OSCE PA, held in Vienna in February.
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.
On February 25-26, 1992, the Armenian armed forces, together with the 366th infantry regiment of Soviet troops stationed in Khankendi committed an act of genocide against the population of the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly.
As a result of the massacre, some 613 people were killed, including 63 children, 106 women and 70 old people. Eight families were totally exterminated, 130 children lost one parent and 25 children lost both. A total of 487 civilians became disabled as a result of the onslaught. Some 1,275 innocent residents were taken hostage, while the fate of 150 people remains unknown.
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 CN