BAKU, Azerbaijan, June 10
The recent visit of the Catholicos of All Armenians Garegin II to Azerbaijan’s Khankandi city and his revenge-seeking statements made there are extremely regrettable, the Chairman of the Caucasian Muslims Office Sheikh-ul-Islam Allahshukur Pashazade said, Trend reports.
"While Armenia for almost 30 years held 20 percent of the territory of Azerbaijan under occupation, not fulfilling the requirements of the UN resolutions, we have always stood for a peaceful settlement of the [Karabakh] conflict, for the process of negotiations at various levels, including religious one, and we didn’t call to hatred on behalf of religion, neither made instigatory statements,” Pashazade noted.
“Thanks to the meetings held towards a peaceful settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with the highest mediation of the religious leaders of the World Council of Churches, the Georgian Orthodox Church, the Vatican and especially the Russian Orthodox Church, in Montreux [Switzerland], Rostov, Moscow, Tbilisi, Yerevan and Baku, we haven’t allowed the conflict to turn into a religious one,” he noted.
“However, unfortunately, the efforts for a peaceful and fair settlement of the conflict weren’t supported by the Armenian Church,” the chairman further said. “The Armenian Apostolic Church, contrary to the spirit of the declarations also signed by the acting Armenian religious leaders during the period of interreligious dialogue continuing for many years in the name of achieving peace, didn’t spread it among its people the idea of peace, which would bring salvation, didn’t incline them towards reconciliation, peaceful life, mutual understanding and cooperation”.
“On the contrary, the Armenian Church justified the criminal actions of the Armenian political leaders, who ignored the decisions of the UN and other international organizations, which demanded the liberation of the occupied territories of Azerbaijan,” he added.
“Now that there isn’t a single surviving mosque, a non-desecrated religious monument left in the occupied Azerbaijani lands, the Armenian Church is spreading falsified information that allegedly Christian religious monuments are under threat in tolerant Azerbaijan, a country of multicultural values.”
“Having put an end to the occupation, restored historical justice and the territorial integrity recognized by the international community, Azerbaijan is currently putting forward projects that contribute to the economic development of the region, including Armenia, and the welfare of the Armenian people,” the chairman said.
“Addressing the world community and religious leaders, I urge them to respond to the actions of the Armenian Apostolic Church, carried out contrary to the commandments of our Almighty Creator, to support the establishment of peace and progress in our region, and not war. May the Almighty Creator help to establish peace and tranquility in the world, Amen!" he concluded.