Artsakh President Appeals for International Help, Calls Republic ‘Disaster Zone’ – The Armenian Mirror-Spectator

He emphasized that the conflict needs to be resolved by peaceful negotiations.

“The Republic of Artsakh has always been open to engaging in negotiations with Azerbaijan to achieve a balanced, fair, and dignified resolution to the conflict. We believe that negotiations should take place within an agreed international format that has an appropriate mandate, ensuring active participation and legitimacy from the international community in the negotiation process,” he said.

The international community should make sure that Azerbaijan again does not resort to the use of or threat of force.

“Trading in people’s sufferings is unacceptable. The transportation and energy blockade of Artsakh, designed to maximize the distress of its people, must be immediately and unconditionally halted in accordance with the decisions of the International Courts and the principles of justice. Ending the illegal siege and alleviating the suffering of the people will create the necessary minimum prerequisites for initiating negotiations and foster more favorable conditions for meaningful discussions. The negotiation process must be grounded in international law norms and universal values, such as justice, dignity, and equality. Any artificial boundaries that could predetermine the outcome of negotiations should be excluded,” Harutyunyan said.

The status question of Artsakh also needs to be resolved. “ The right to self- determination of our people and the imperative need to prevent genocide form an indisputable basis for recognizing and securing the right to external self-determination, grounded in the concept of ‘remedial secession. This principle was of vital importance in 1991 when the region councils of the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region and the Shahumyan region proclaimed the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic based on international law and USSR legislation,” he added.

The situation is dire enough, he said, that “I am declaring Artsakh a disaster zone today, urgently seeking a comprehensive international response and in need of security, political, and humanitarian support from the international community, collectively and individually. Artsakh is now the only area in the world facing complete isolation and siege, with no access to humanitarian relief and international presence. If the declaration of a disaster zone does not lead to an immediate international support, Artsakh could be likened to a concentration camp, with all the dire consequences it entails.”

He added, “The time has come to consider unilateral action as a last resort to prevent mass crimes. Our foremost demands are directed towards the parties involved in the Trilateral statement of November 9, 2020, particularly towards Russia as the security guarantor, and Armenia, urging them to fulfill their obligations. We call on Armenia to refrain from making any statements or taking actions to recognize Artsakh as part of Azerbaijan and respect the right of the people of Artsakh to self-determination.

“We demand the UN Security Council, within the scope of its mandate and obligations, to take decisive steps to prevent the genocidal policy implemented by Azerbaijan and ensure the implementation of the decisions of the International Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights, particularly regarding the opening of the Lachin Corridor.

“In this regard, I urgently request the involvement of the United Nations, its entire system, and specialized agencies mandated specifically to act in situations of humanitarian crises . The international community’s support is crucial to safeguard the lives and rights of the people of Artsakh during these critical times,” Harutyunyan said.

He expressed his readiness to make an online presentation to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

“Additionally, I urge the executive directors of UNICEF, the United Nations World Food Program, and the United Nations Population Fund, along with the Director-General of the World Health Organization, to live up to their mandates and responsibilities, and deliver relief and presence on the ground. I appeal to all actors involved to cease supporting Azerbaijan’s criminal agenda, as it only exacerbates the suffering of innocent people. I call for concrete steps to be taken to ensure a favorable environment for the stable security of the people of Artsakh and a peaceful and just settlement of the conflict. The international community must unite and take decisive action to alleviate the immense hardships faced by the people of Artsakh and work towards a lasting resolution for the benefit of all involved parties,” he noted.

He concluded, “The international community, in the face of the UN Security Council, including three OSCE [Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe] Minsk Group co-chair countries as members, and mandated with primary responsibility for international peace and security and prevention of atrocity crimes, possesses all the necessary tools to stop Azerbaijan’s genocidal policy. The international impunity of Azerbaijan must be put to an end, as failure to hold those responsible accountable will only pave the way for the occurrence of new and even more severe crimes which are about to be committed.”

 

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