Azerbaijan is carrying out ethnic cleansing and genocide against the Armenian population of Nagorno Karabakh (Artsakh).
We call on the international community and the international media to put pressure on the executive authorities of the UN member states, especially the permanent members of the Security Council, to immediately take practical measures to prevent and stop the Aliyev criminial clan of Azerbaijan from the starvation, ethnic cleansing and genocide of the Armenian population of Nagorno Karabakh (Artsakh).
The remaining 120,000 Armenian population in Nagorno-Karabakh are besieged as if in medieval times and the region which is on the doorsteps of Europe has been made into a concentration camp in this 21st century. The connection with Armenia and the world has been cut off, because their only lifeline with the world, the Lachin Corridor, has been closed for about 8 months. Contrary to the appeals and decisions of international humanitarian structures and the international court, the Aliyev clan of Azerbaijan, ignoring all international humanitarian laws, has planned ethnic cleansing and has committed genocide. He says either you will submit to me as meek and obedient captives and I will do with you as I want, or I will starve you and force you to leave your house and place and leave here.
It is an undeniable international convention that humanitarian issues cannot be used as a baton to suppress the rights of 120,000 people.
It is appropriate to quote the former prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Luis Moreno Ocampo, who, in response to Azerbaijan’s denial, reiterated his previous statement: “The Lachin Corridor must be opened, otherwise the Armenians of Karabakh are threatened with genocide.”
He continued, “The members of the European Union, the United States, and Russia have an obligation to prevent the genocide, that is the main issue. We must open this corridor not because of the negotiation process, but because this is a genocide. And the United States and the European Union should not bow to the President of Azerbaijan. Ilham Aliyev must understand that he cannot commit genocide to force negotiations.”
On Wednesday, August 16, at the session of the UN Security Council, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia announced that “Lachin Corridor was agreed upon as a connecting link between Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh and has no alternative.” The Lachin Corridor must be opened. As for other possible communications, it should be resolved within the framework of the international mechanism of the Baku-Stepanakert dialogue.
Despite all the calls, despite obligations assumed by the November 9th, 2020 tripartite declaration and despite the legally binding decisions of the International Court of Justice, the situation has not improved. On the contrary, Azerbaijan has gradually but consistently intensified the blockade, up to the complete siege of Nagorno Karabakh.
The primary defender of this inhuman program is Turkey, which is the successor of Ottoman Turkey, which committed the Armenian Genocide in 1915, and even today, instead of accepting and
repenting, it supports Azerbaijan and implements its longterm pan Turkish plans. Russia with its peacekeeping troops is also complicit in this case, who willingly or unwillingly, make concessions to
Azerbaijan at the expense of their obligations to Armenia and against Armenia’s interests. Russian demonstrates cooperation with Turkey and Azerbaijan. It is true that the West, urges and demands the opening of the Lachin Corridor, but contrary to the universal human values and rights they proclaim to adhere to, they encourage Azerbaijan with their inaction.
That is why the call of the international community to open the Lachin Corridor continues to remain unanswered, while the humanitarian situation on the ground is worsening day by day. The humanitarian cargo sent by Armenia is blocked in Syunik, and the farmers of Artsakh who are under the constant threat of gunfire from Azeris border soldiers, are unable to work their fields.
In this way, the assertion put forward by international experts that Azerbaijan is subjecting the Armenians of Nagorno Karabakh to genocide through starvation is justified and well-documented. On that ground the opening of the Lachin Corridor should be seen as a step towards the prevention of genocide.
The declarations in the UN Security Council confirm that Azerbaijan has based its theses on absolute lies, and to put it simply, is deceiving its people and the world. In short, Aliyev invents new and fictitious history for his country. He uses every occasion to announce to the world that even Yerevan is an Azerbaijani city and a country by the name of Armenia does not exist.
The Armenians of Nagorno Karabakh (Artsakh) have liberated their homeland for more than 30 years. They have lived and continue to live by the laws of the government they adopted enjoying wide range of freedoms compared to people living in Azerbaijan, where most people are deprived of basic human rights. Therefore, it is inhumane and unacceptable for Artsakh to be forced to accept a new imprisonment and captivity.
Legally speaking, according to international law, Nagorno Karabakh (Artsakh) has never been a part of the Republic of Azerbaijan. In the 1920s, the League of Nations recognized Karabakh as an inseparable part of Armenia. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, Artsakh declared its independence. Azerbaijan considers itself the successor of the Azerbaijan Republic of 1918 and not the successor of Soviet Azerbaijan, therefore Nagorno Karabakh was not and cannot be a part of the Republic of Azerbaijan.
It is sad to note that during the collapse of the Soviet Union, the whole world encouraged and defended the right of self-determination for Artsakh Armenians, and then when the Soviet Union actually collapsed, the rights of Armenians in Artsakh were forgotten. Today, as a result of that self-centered policy, the life of an entire people is under the threat of sudden and total annihilation.
All these issues, especially the humanitarian issues, must obviously be resolved with the decisive intervention of the international community.
For the sake of the inalienable rights of every human being, for the sake of all internationally sanctioned laws, we urge and demand the international community, the international media and all international institutions dedicated to peace, to raise their collective voice so that those who decide the fate of the world do not allow new genocides from occurring.
Before it’s too late, we need to move from talk to action.
Assembly of Armenians of Europe
August 22, 2023