Senate of Colombia adopts resolution on Khojaly genocide

Senate of Colombia adopts resolution on Khojaly genocide.

The Senate of Colombia adopted a resolution related to the 25th anniversary of the Khojaly genocide, the Azerbaijani Embassy in Colombia told Trend.

In the document, the Senate of Colombia honored the memory of the victims of the genocide and expressed solidarity with the Azerbaijani people, the embassy said.

The resolution noted the importance of preventing the similar acts which led to the death of hundreds of civilians in the history of mankind.

The Colombian senators also expressed support for the peaceful settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

The document signed by the vice president of the Senate of Colombia, the president of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, was handed over to Azerbaijani Charge d’Affaires in Colombia Ramil Farzaliyev.

On February 25-26, 1992, the Armenian armed forces, together with the 366th infantry regiment of the former Soviet troops, stationed in Khankendi, committed an act of genocide against the population of the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly.

As many as 613 people, including 63 children, 106 women and 70 old people were killed as a result of the massacre. A total of 1,000 civilians became disabled as a result of the onslaught. Some 1,275 innocent residents were taken hostage, while the fate of 150 people still remains unknown.

The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.

The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.

AzerNews

US Congressman from New Jersey makes Khojaly statement

US Congressman from New Jersey Donald Payne has made a statement on the 25th anniversary of Khojaly genocide, Azertac reported.

In his statement, Payne said Khojaly tragedy was a brutal murder of more than 600 civilians, mostly women, children and elderly, in the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly 25 years ago. Congressman Payne called on his colleagues to join him in remembering the victims of the tragedy.

AzerNews

American co-chair of OSCE MG to visit Baku this week

Richard Hoagland, the U.S. co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, will visit Azerbaijan by the end of this week, the U.S. Embassy in Azerbaijan told Trend.

He is expected to hold meetings with Azerbaijani officials.

Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov has earlier said the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs will visit the South Caucasus region in March to mull the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement.

The OSCE Minsk Group, the activities of which have become known as the Minsk Process, works to find a peaceful solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict for over two decades, but in vain.

The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.

The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.

AzerNews

Arizona House of Representatives passes a proclamation condemning the Khojaly Genocide

Arizona House of Representatives passes a proclamation condemning the Khojaly Genocide.

Arizona State House of Representatives passed a proclamation on February 23, 2017 recognizing and condemning the Khojaly Genocide, which was committed by Armenia’s army against Azerbaijani civilians in 1992 fleeing the town of Khojaly in Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh region.

Read by the House Appropriation Committee Chairman Rep. Don Shooter on the House Floor, the proclamation was presented to Azerbaijan’s Consul General in Los Angeles Nasimi Aghayev. As a sign of respect for the innocent victims of the Khojaly Genocide, all legislators listened to the proclamation standing.

The proclamation says that on February 25 and 26, 1992, Armenian armed forces occupied the town of Khojaly in Azerbaijan and “killed more than six hundred civilians, wounded more than one thousand civilians; and captured more than one thousand two hundred civilians”.

The document further states: “Documenting this mass killing the Human Rights Watch called it the “largest massacre in the conflict”; major United States and international news organizations reported about the killings with horror; and numerous governments around the world as well as State Legislatures and Governors of 20 U.S. States passed resolutions/proclamations condemning the attack”.

The proclamation specifically mentions that the “perpetrators of this genocide are still at large and have not been brought to justice yet”.

“Tensions between Armenia and Azerbaijan are still running high because Armenian army continues to occupy twenty percent of Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized territory, in the Nagorno-Karabakh region and the surrounding seven districts”, the document continues.

It also mentions that “resolutions condemning the occupation of Azerbaijan’s territory by Armenian forces have been passed by the United Nations Security Council and the General Assembly”.

The proclamation concludes by stating that the Arizona State House of Representatives honors the victims of the Khojaly tragedy, and recognizes February 26, 2017, as the 25th Anniversary of the Khojaly tragedy.

It should be noted that this is the second official document on Khojaly adopted by the Arizona State Legislature. The first document was passed by the upper chamber of the Legislature – the Arizona State Senate – on February 26, 2015.

Consulate General of Azerbaijan in Los Angeles

 

Statement by Hikmat Hajiyev,Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Statement by Hikmat Hajiyev,Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

As stated by the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Azerbaijan on February 25 at midnight, the armed forces of Armenia made an attempt to penetrate into the positions of the armed forces of Azerbaijan with the aim of conducting large-scale provocation on the frontline and trying to seize advantageous positions in Khojavand-Fizuli direction of the front.

The escalation of the situation in the front and perpetration of military provocations are continuation of Armenia’s political provocations as holding of illegal “referendum” in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan on February 20, 2017. The political and military provocations of Armenia are aimed at deliberate escalation of the situation and undermining the efforts for solution of conflict via the substantive talks, diverting the attention of the international community in the eve of Khojaly genocide from the responsibilities borne by Armenia for Khojaly and strengthening already lost social support base and position of Armenia’s ruling regime in forthcoming parliamentary elections in Armenia.

Azerbaijani side has repeatedly emphasized that the illegal presence of armed forces of Armenia in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan remains the prime reason for the escalation of the situation. The events occurred in April last year proved it over again. The international community and particularly the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs at the Heads of State level on many occasions stated that the status quo is unacceptable and unsustainable and it must be changed.

With a view of preventing the escalation of situation and changing the status of quo of occupation and ensuring sustainable peace in the region, full and unconditional withdrawal of the armed forces of Armenia from all occupied territories of Azerbaijan has to be provided based on the relevant resolutions of the United Nations Security Council.

Instigator of the escalation of situation in the front is Armenia and thereby, all responsibility falls on political-military leadership of Armenia.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan

 

Armenia continues breaking ceasefire with Azerbaijan

Over the past 24 hours, Armenia’s armed forces have 120 times violated the ceasefire in various directions along the line of contact between Azerbaijani and Armenian troops, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry told Trend Feb. 25.

The Azerbaijani army positions located in the Farahli village and on nameless heights of Azerbaijan’s Gazakh district underwent fire from the Armenian army positions located on nameless heights of Ijevan district and in the Shavarshavan village and on nameless heights of the Noyemberyan district of Armenia.

Meanwhile, the Azerbaijani army positions located in the Munjuglu and Aghbulag villages of Azerbaijan’s Tovuz district were shelled from the Armenian army positions located in the Aygedzor and Chinari villages of Armenia’s Berd district.

The Azerbaijani army positions located on nameless heights of Azerbaijan’s Gadabay district underwent fire from the Armenian army positions located on nameless heights of Armenia’s Krasnoselsk district.

Moreover, the Azerbaijani army positions were shelled from the Armenian army positions located near the Armenian-occupied Goyarkh, Chilaburt villages of the Tartar district, Shikhlar, Garagashli, Namirli, Marzili villages of the Aghdam district, Kuropatkino village of the Khojavand district, Garakhanbayli and Gorgan villages of the Fuzuli district, as well as from the positions located on nameless heights of the Goranboy, Tartar, Aghdam, Khojavand, Fuzuli and Jabrayil districts of Azerbaijan.

The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts. The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.

AzerNews

Armenian Armed Forces carried out a large-scale provocation along the entire frontline

On February 25 at midnight, the Armenian Armed Forces’ military units have made an attempt to penetrate into the positions of Azerbaijani Armed Forces in different directions with the aim to carry out a large-scale provocation on the frontline.
As a result of constant surveillance of the enemy, setting up ambushes and combat security, the enemy action has been identified in advance. The military units of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces have taken firm measures to prevent the enemy penetration to the depth of our defense.
Fierce fighting took place between the enemy, trying to seize advantageous positions in Khojavand-Fizuli direction of the front and our military units.
The enemy forces were forced to retreat as a result of brave action of the units of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces which were standing in ambush set up in this direction.
Azerbaijani side suffered losses as a result of fighting.
Failing to move forward in various areas, the enemy using heavy artillery currently subjected to fire the positions of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces.
In accordance with the operational situation, appropriate countermeasures are taken against the firing positions and staging areas of the enemy.

Ministry of Defence of Azerbaijan

Statement by the Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group

Statement by the Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group.

The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group (Ambassadors Igor Popov of the Russian Federation, Stephane Visconti of France and Richard Hoagland of the United States of America) met yesterday with the Foreign Minister of Armenia Edward Nalbandian and the Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan Elmar Mammadyarov, separately and then jointly. The Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Ambassador Andrzej Kasprzyk, also participated in the meetings.

The Co-Chairs discussed with the Ministers the current situation along the Line of Contact and the Armenia–Azerbaijan border. The Co-Chairs reiterated that there is no alternative to a peaceful solution to the conflict and that war is not an option, and called upon the sides to exercise restraint on the terrain as well as in their public communications and to prepare their population for peace and not for war. The Co-Chairs also urged the Sides to adhere strictly to the 1994/95 ceasefire agreements that constitute the foundation of the cessation of hostilities. The Co-Chairs recalled the May 2011 joint statements of their Presidents in Deauville emphasizing that the use of force would only bring more suffering and devastation and would be condemned by the international community. The Co-Chairs shared their views with the Sides on the steps which should be taken toward implementing decisions from the 2016 Summits in Vienna and St. Petersburg aimed at stabilizing the situation in the conflict zone.

The Co-Chairs stressed to the Ministers the need to demonstrate greater flexibility and to resume comprehensive negotiations on reaching a lasting settlement as soon as possible.

The Co-Chairs recognized that the Armenian authorities’ recent decision to return the body of an Azerbaijani serviceman was a helpful humanitarian gesture. The two Ministers reiterated their commitment to strictly observe their international humanitarian obligations including those of the Astrakhan Declaration of October 2010 issued by the Presidents of Armenia, Azerbaijan, and the Russian Federation.

The Co-Chairs are aware that a so-called constitutional referendum is scheduled to take place in Nagorno-Karabakh on February 20, 2017. Although the Co-Chairs note that the de-facto Nagorno-Karabakh authorities view the use of such a procedure as an effort to organize the public life of their population, they underscore again that no countries, including Armenia and Azerbaijan, recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as an independent and sovereign state. Accordingly, the Co-Chairs do not accept the results of the referendum on February 20 as affecting the legal status of Nagorno-Karabakh. The Co-Chairs also stress that the results in no way prejudge the final status of Nagorno-Karabakh or the outcome of the ongoing negotiations to bring a lasting and peaceful settlement to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

The Co-Chairs plan to travel to the region in March.

Source: U.S. Embassy Baku

Peter Tase: Armenia must withdraw its troops from the sovereign territory of Azerbaijan

Expert hopes Washington to intensify efforts for sustainable solution of Karabakh conflict.

Armenia must withdraw its troops from the sovereign territory of Azerbaijan, including Nagorno-Karabakh and its seven surrounding regions, and should respect the international laws and UN Security Council resolutions, said Peter Tase, a political analyst and international relations expert at the Marquette University.

Tase named this condition as one of three items that must be followed so that concrete results are seen in the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

“Secondly, Yerevan must refrain from embracing the current status-quo and engage in a results oriented set of negotiations with the leadership of Azerbaijan,” Tase said in an interview with Eurasia Diary.

Azerbaijan and Armenia for over two decades have been locked in conflict, which emerged over Armenian territorial claims. Since the 1990s war, Armenian armed forces have occupied over 20 percent of Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions. The UN Security Council has adopted four resolutions on Armenian withdrawal, but they have not been enforced to this day.

Tase further added that the Armenian government must focus on combating corruption and organized crime, and not use the conflict as a shield and as a tool that helps overshadow the domestic problems that Armenian population faces.

In third, Tase considers that the OSCE, European Union and other distinguished international players and organizations must play an active role towards bringing peace and stability in the Caucasus region, and “they must defend the principles of international law and be impartial during the negotiations process”.

Speaking of the foreign policy of U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration, Tase said that no well deserved attention was provided for Azerbaijan and other Caspian region countries during the last two weeks.

“The historic partnership between Azerbaijan and the United States must be strengthened and further developed in many fields including, economy, trade, commerce, education and cultural initiative,” Tase noted.

The expert also voiced hope that Washington will provide a more robust intervention towards the sustainable solution of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

“I am hopeful that President Trump will appoint a team of experts at the State Department that will address and bring concrete results in the decades’ long conflict that is succumbing the nation of Azerbaijan and is strengthening peace and stability in the Caucasus region,” said Tase.

While the OSCE Minsk Group acted as the only mediator in resolution of the conflict, the occupation of the territory of the sovereign State with its internationally recognized boundaries has been left out of due attention of the international community for years.

Armenia ignores four UN Security Council resolutions on immediate withdrawal from the occupied territory of Azerbaijan, thus keeping tension high in the region.

AzerNews

A new U.S. co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, established for peaceful resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, has been appointed

A new U.S. co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, established for peaceful resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, has been appointed.

Richard Hoagland will be the interim co-chair starting from January 2017, the U.S. Embassy in Azerbaijan reported on December 30.

Hoagland, a diplomat with over 30 years of experience, will replace James Warlick, who will step down on December 31. Hoagland is currently the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary in State’s Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs.

Warlick was appointed as U.S. Minsk Group co-chair on August 2013 and assumed the office in September 2013 of that year.

While the OSCE Minsk Group acts as the only mediator in resolution of the conflict, it failed to make any move to achieve a breakthrough in the peace process so far.

Azerbaijan and Armenia for over two decades have been locked in conflict, which emerged over Armenian territorial claims. Since the 1990s war, Armenian armed forces have occupied over 20 percent of Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions. The UN Security Council has adopted four resolutions on Armenian withdrawal, but they have not been enforced to this day.

AzerNews