Details added: first version posted on December 29, 18:48
BAKU, Azerbaijan, December 29. The representatives of the Azerbaijani public released an appeal regarding the letter written to President of France Emmanuel Macron on behalf of the political leaders in the French Parliament, Trend reports.
"We regret to inform you that the open slanderous and biased campaign carried out in recent years by various political forces of France against the Azerbaijani state and people crossed all moral boundaries. This unfair campaign is disorienting the French public in regards to Azerbaijan, which causes serious concern for our people,” the appeal said.
“In fact, the reality is that in the territories of Azerbaijan, where the Russian peacekeeping contingent is temporarily stationed, our natural resources are being illegally exploited, and serious damage is being done to the environment. During the period of the occupation of Azerbaijani lands by Armenia, war criminals - the former presidents of Armenia Kocharyan and Sargsyan - benefited from this illegal economic activity,” the appeal noted.
“At present, our deposits are being exploited and natural resources are being exported to Armenia, and from there to other countries by Ruben Vardanyan, who is engaged in money laundering, drug and weapons trafficking,” the appeal authors further said. “We, unlike the French politicians who are conducting an anti-Azerbaijani slander campaign, refer to the facts. The reports and resolutions of the OSCE, the UN Development Program, the UN Environment Program, and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe confirmed the facts of illegal economic activity and illegal exploitation of natural resources in our former occupied territories.”
“Since the beginning of December, Azerbaijani specialists have been trying to gain access to the deposits in order to monitor them there due to the deterioration of the environmental situation, but they have encountered an aggressive reaction from local Armenian residents,” the authors emphasized. “Thus, the planned initial inspection and monitoring haven’t taken place. As a sign of protest, representatives of the civil society of Azerbaijan and environmentalists are holding a rally in the zone of temporary deployment of Russian peacekeepers, demanding an end to the illegal exploitation of our natural resources and environmental terror.”
The appeal noted that the letter to the French president mentioned ‘ethnic cleansing’, however, contrary to what is written there, ethnic cleansing and genocide were carried out by Armenia against Azerbaijanis.
According to the appeal, Azerbaijanis, who became victims of the aggressive policy of Armenia, were expelled from their historical lands, and 20 percent of the territory of Azerbaijan was occupied. As a result, more than a million Azerbaijanis became refugees and internally displaced persons. The UN Security Council resolutions, which France also voted for, confirm these facts.
The appeal also said that in order to get acquainted with Azerbaijan, one can read, for example, the ‘Journey to the Caucasus’ work of the famous French writer Alexandre Dumas, and learn in detail about the Azerbaijani people and their culture.
"In May 1918, the first democratic republic was established in the Muslim East - the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic, the independence of which was also recognized by Paris. French Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau was one of the world leaders who supported the independence of Azerbaijan,” the appeal authors reminded. “The entire archive of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic is stored in the library of the Research Center for Central Europe, the Caucasus and Russia of the Higher School of Social Sciences of France, and we invite French politicians who demonstrate a biased position to visit this library.”
Besides, according to the appeal, one of the first decisions of the Azerbaijani parliament was sending of young Azerbaijanis to foreign countries for studying at prestigious universities at the expense of the government in the 1919-1920 academic years, and most of them were sent to France.
The appeal also said that the participation of Azerbaijanis in the French Resistance Movement is one of the most glorious and unforgettable pages in the history of Azerbaijan. In the most difficult times of the occupation of France by the Nazis, the brothers Kirill and Alexander Makinski, Ahmadiya Jabrayilov and many other Azerbaijani compatriots fought for it.
“The fact that today France takes an unfair position towards Azerbaijan is also disrespectful to the Azerbaijanis who died for France. The visit of the head of the Provisional Government of France General de Gaulle to Baku on November 27, 1944, is remembered with satisfaction as a gesture of gratitude to the Azerbaijanis who participated in the Resistance Movement,” the appeal noted.
The appeal also noted that after the re-election of Macron as president, he announced that the issue of the environment will be one of the main areas of his activity. In this context, the use by France of its capabilities to suppress environmental crimes committed by Armenians in the territories of Azerbaijan, where the Russian peacekeeping contingent is temporarily deployed, would be fully consistent with the policy of the French government.
The appeal authors expressed the hope that the president of France will give priority to the interests of his country, rather than the Armenian community and politicians under its influence, and will support the efforts of a secular, tolerant, and multicultural Azerbaijan in the name of justice and peace in the region.
Double standards discredit the norms and principles of international law. Respect for and observance of the norms and principles of international law is also the duty of France, the appeal concluded.