Armenia attracting mercenaries to occupied territories of Azerbaijan

Armenia attracting mercenaries to occupied territories of Azerbaijan

BAKU, Azerbaijan, Oct. 23

By Zhale Qasimova - Trend:

Azerbaijani non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have appealed to a number of world officials regarding the violation of human rights by Armenia, Trend reports.

The appeal was sent to Chairperson of the UN Human Rights Council Elisabeth Tihi-Fisslberger, President of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) Peter Maurer, ICRC office Azerbaijan - Ariane Baurer, as well as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Chairperson of the Working Group on the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and countering the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination.

Also, the appeal was directed to the UN Special Rapporteur on the support and protection of human rights during the fight against terror on the delivery of mercenaries by Armenia to the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.

"We express our deep concern that the investigations of the Prosecutor General's Office of Azerbaijan have proved the fact that in recent days Armenia has been delivering members of various terrorist organizations, including foreign mercenaries, to the occupied territories of Azerbaijan, using them against our country,” said the appeal of the Azerbaijani NGOs.

“Thus, it was established that among the fighters of the Armenian Armed Forces neutralized during military operations, there are many mercenaries who came from Syria, Lebanon, the US, Canada, Greece and France, evidence has been collected that they were delivered to the conflict zone by Armenia. There is substantiated information that, by the initiative of Armenia, the PKK terrorist organization has created military bases in the occupied lands of Azerbaijan and is conducting military operations," the appeal said.

The appeal also emphasized that the concept of "mercenary" is reflected in #47 article of the first additional protocol (1977) of the first Geneva Convention for the Protection of Victims in International Armed Conflicts of 1949.

"According to this article, a mercenary doesn’t have the right to receive the status of a combatant or prisoner of war. That is, the participation of mercenaries in a military conflict is contrary to international humanitarian law. International Convention ‘On combating the attraction, use, financing and training of mercenaries’, adopted by resolution (44/34) at the 44th session of the UN General Assembly on December 4, 1989, being the main legal instrument in the fight against mercenarism, considers it a crime to attract, finance, use and train mercenaries," said the appeal.

Azerbaijani NGOs called on international organizations to firmly condemn the fact of violation of the norms and principles of international humanitarian law, on the basis of which Armenia involves mercenaries in the conflict, and to take the necessary steps to suppress these actions.

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