BAKU, Azerbaijan, September 21. Azerbaijan was obliged to launch counterterrorism measures on the ground, Assistant to the President of Azerbaijan - Head of the Foreign Policy Department of the Presidential Administration Hikmet Hajiyev said in an interview with CNN, Trend reports.
Answering provocative questions of the CNN host, Hikmet Hajiyev strongly reiterated that Azerbaijan had made it clear that, if illegal armed forces of Armenia in Karabakh disarm and demilitarize, the anti-terror activities Azerbaijan launched would be completed.
"Azerbaijan as any country in the world has right to protect its sovereignty. On multiple occasions Azerbaijan has said that there are 10,000 Armenian soldiers. This was a threat not only to Azerbaijan, but to the whole region. But this is in the past now. We are looking forward to provide rights and security to average Armenian residents of Karabakh under the constitution of Azerbaijan, and ending with the "grey zone" that has been in place for 30 years in Azerbaijan. This "grey zone" is a remnant of 30-year long Armenian occupation," he said.
Hajiyev pointed out that Azerbaijan was not aiming at Armenian civilians in Karabakh, contrariwise, Azerbaijan has used precision guided munitions and we had been very selective and very accurate in regard with target neutralization, while all civilians have been informed beforehand via SMS.
Meanwhile, in order to ensure the provisions of the Trilateral Statement, to stop large-scale provocations in the Karabakh economic region, to disarm and withdraw formations of the Armenian armed forces from the territories of Azerbaijan, to neutralize their military infrastructure, to ensure the safety of the peaceful population returning to the territories liberated from occupation, civil servants involved in construction and reconstruction works, and our military personnel, as well as to restore the constitutional order of the Republic of Azerbaijan, anti-terrorist measures have been launched in the region.
Taking into account the appeal of the representatives of the Armenian population of Karabakh through the Russian peacekeeping contingent, on September 20, 2023, at 13:00 (GMT+4), an agreement was reached on the cessation of local anti-terrorist activities under the following conditions: Armenian armed forces formations, illegal Armenian armed formations located in Azerbaijan's Karabakh region, lay down their weapons, leave their combat positions and military posts, and completely disarm, Armenian armed forces formations leave the territory of Azerbaijan, illegal Armenian armed formations are disbanded.