BAKU, Azerbaijan, August 1. Armenia's powerlessness has shifted to the legal sphere, Deputy Chairman of the Supreme Court of Azerbaijan, Plenipotentiary Representative to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) Chingiz Asgarov said, Trend reports.
Asgarov made the remark commenting on a letter addressed to him by the ECHR, requesting the Azerbaijani government to provide information about the detention conditions and the health status of Vagif Khachatryan accused of perpetrating a massacre in Azerbaijan's Meshali village on December 22, 1991.
He emphasized that Azerbaijan, adhering to its commitments under the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, will provide the information requested.
At the same time, it's at least surprising that the Armenian government, to obtain information readily available in the public domain and media, appealed to the European Court and presented such a request as an 'interim measure', Asgarov said.
Investigation of criminal case initiated by the Azerbaijani Military Prosecutor's Office on relevant articles of the Criminal Code on massacre and deportation of persons of Azerbaijani nationality, destruction and harm of public and private properties resulting large-scale damage caused by members of illegal Armenian armed groups on December 22, 1991 in Meshali village of Khojaly district is ongoing.
The investigation established that a citizen of the Republic of Azerbaijan Khachatryan, who was born in 1955 in Badara village of Khojaly (former Asgaran) district and worked as a driver in Khankendi city transport company, together with other people of Armenian nationality, used various weapons, including firearms and infantry fighting vehicles, to kill all Azerbaijani residents of Meshali village (Khojaly district).
The assailants attacked the village, killed 25 and injured 14 people of Azerbaijani nationality, and, contrary to national and international law norms, expelled 358 Azerbaijanis from their domicile.
In addition, Khachatryan continued his criminal actions together with his accomplices, destroying and damaging property belonging to the state and villagers, causing a total of over 5.96 million manat ($3.5 million) of material damage.
Due to the fact that sufficient reasonable suspicions arose regarding the criminal case, it was decided to involve Khachatryan as an accused person under articles 103 (massacre) and 107 (deportation or forced movement of the population) of the Criminal Code of Azerbaijan. However, due to the fact that his whereabouts were unknown to the investigation, on November 12, 2013, an international arrest warrant was issued by an Azerbaijani court's decision.
As a result of the conducted search measures, on July 29, 2023, Vagif Khachatryan was detained by the military personnel of the State Border Service at the Lachin border crossing point of the Azerbaijan-Armenia state border while trying to go to the Republic of Armenia for treatment through the mediation of the International Committee of the Red Cross.