After the end of the 2020
war, and under threats of a new war, Azerbaijani armed servicemen positioned
themselves in the vicinity of the villages of Gegharkunik and Syunik provinces,
and on the roads connecting the communities of Syunik province. This was
announced by the Human Rights Defender of Armenia during an online discussion
titled “Human Rights Challenges a Year After the 44-Day War in
Nagorno-Karabakh” held with the initiation of the Open Society Foundations-
The purpose of the
discussion was to deliberate in detail about the human rights situation around
the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict after the war, the humanitarian crisis created
after the hostilities, and the role of international organizations, in particular
that of the European Union, the OSCE, the Council of Europe and the UN.
“We must realize that this war has a human
rights dimension in addition to the political and military one, however this
component is completely ignored. The Azerbaijani armed forces violate the
rights of the Armenians living on the border almost every day. Therefore, the
creation of a security zone, which we have proposed, is a need to restore the
normal life of the people living on the border, and to start the negotiations
on demarcation and delimitation of the border.”- noted the Human Rights
Defender of Armenia.
Mr. Arman Tatoyan also
referenced the state-sponsored policy of Armenophobia by the Azerbaijani
authorities. “The state-sponsored policy of Armenophobia and enmity by the
Azerbaijani authorities against Armenia and Artsakh has two pillars: Religious
and ethnic. This Azerbaijani policy is
also a threat to the democracies and human rights of those countries where
Armenians and Azerbaijanis live. This is a policy which aims at maintaining the
enmity between these two people around the world.”- noted Mr. Arman Tatoyan.
During the online event
organized by OSF-Armenia Ms. Heidi Hautala, the Vice-President of the European
Parliament, and a member of the Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance in
the European Parliament; Ms. Siranush Sahaykyan, lawyer and Co-Founder of Path
of Law NGO, and Mr. Levon Gevorgyan, lawyer and member of the legal team
representing Armenia in the International Court of Justice.
The participants of the
discussion agreed that the active and greater involvement of international
organizations is extremely important at this stage. In particular, the
deployment of a monitoring mission at the border with the mandate of the OSCE
and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and with the assistance of the
EU, will help to address the human rights violations and the border situation.
The speakers also
stressed the need to ensure the unimpeded entry of international organizations
to Artsakh, in particular that of UNESCO. During the discussion, it was
specifically emphasized that the international community should give a proper
assessment to the current events and not to view both sides with parity.
organizations need to be more honest in their public statements and policies,
especially on the issue of the immediate return of the Armenia captives held in
Azerbaijan as well as the hate speech and discrimination committed by
high-level Azerbaijani officials against Armenians.