Details added (first version posted on 17:46)
Baku, Azerbaijan, Jan. 24
Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan once again tried to deceive the international community by his speech at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry’s Spokesman Hikmat Hajiyev told Trend Jan. 24.
Hajiyev said that the main injustice in the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict or as the Armenian leadership called it, the “deficit of justice”, is primarily the occupation of sovereign territories of Azerbaijan and ethnic cleansing against more than one million Azerbaijanis in the occupied territories and violation of their all fundamental rights.
Despite the fact that Armenia took obligations on the conflict’s settlement when becoming a member of the Council of Europe, it has not fulfilled them yet, noted the spokesman.
“Taking into account that the Council of Europe is responsible for the formation of a single legal area among the member-states, Armenia, as a member of the Council of Europe, continues to occupy the territory of other member of the Council of Europe – Azerbaijan,” he said. “To change the recognized borders of other country, by using force, or making attempts to occupy its territories, is unacceptable. I would like to hope that the Council of Europe’s leadership will raise these issues, as well as the issues about the rights of all Azerbaijani refugees and internally displaced people, whose fundamental rights, envisaged by the European Convention on Human Rights have been violated, before the Armenian leadership,” he said.
“The entire international community is aware about Azerbaijan's just position on resolution of the conflict and this position is supported. Azerbaijan's position is based on the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council, the norms and principles of international law, the Helsinki Final Act. The Armenian community of the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan together with the Azerbaijani community can use the right to self-determination within the borders of Azerbaijan.”
Hajiyev stressed that as an integral part of the step-by-step process in order to achieve progress in resolving the conflict, first of all, Armenian troops must be withdrawn from the occupied districts adjacent to the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan, and opportunities must be created for the further actions.
“This is the only possible and real solution to the conflict,” he said. “In this way, the confidence of Azerbaijan as a side that has been subjected to the aggression and occupation must be ensured.”
OSCE MG co-chair Richard Hoagland in solidarity with other co-chairs announced about the step-by-step actions in August 2017 that must be taken to resolve the conflict.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has recently also made a statement about a step-by-step solution to the conflict.
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.