Saturday, 23 October 2021

W Weekly Update

26 June - 3 July

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Weekly update

 

3 July
The Russia-led Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) has rejected an appeal from Yerevan, which was made in May after Azerbaijani forces breached Armenia’s sovereign borders and advanced their positions into the Gegharkunik and Syunik provinces, reported asbarez.com. Calling it a “border incident,” the CSTO’s Secretary-General Stanislav Zas told journalists on Saturday that the situation does not fall under the organization’s charter on collective defense. “You have to understand that the potential of the CSTO is used only in the event of an aggression, an attack [on one of the member countries]. Here we are dealing, in fact, with a border incident. Thank God, there are no casualties, there is no shooting there. This is a border incident, it must be solved, and we are in favor of solving it peacefully,” said Zas. Last month an Armenian soldier was killed and six others were taken hostage by Azerbaijani forces, escalating an already tense situation. According to Armenian officials there are 1,000 Azerbaijani soldiers currently on Armenia’s sovereign territory, who pose a threat to the lives of Armenian citizens living in the border areas. In his remarks, Zas claimed there was no escalation of the conflict.
https://asbarez.com/csto-rejects-yerevans-appeal-for-help-in-armenia-border-breach-by-azerbaijan/?fbclid=IwAR3Xvbfh34w6iNHq825_XRcuI98ijd3dWf3SxvTJyIY1zUb1kxoJbRzO5_4

 

2 July
Armenia’s Human Rights Defender Arman Tatoyan met with Dunja Mijatović, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, in Strasbourg on Friday, his office reported. According to panorama.am, the human rights defender presented to the commissioner the urgency of the immediate return of the Armenian captives from Azerbaijan, presenting facts that the Azerbaijani side is holding the captives with the gross violations of international human rights requirements. Arman Tatoyan presented the gross violations of the rights of the border residents of Armenia by the Azerbaijani military servicemen, and the results of the fact-finding activities in Syunik and Gegharkunik Provinces. During the meeting, the parties also discussed the human rights situation in penitentiary and psychiatric institutions, and other places of deprivation of liberty, as well as issues related to the protection of the rights of children, women and persons with disabilities.
https://www.panorama.am/en/news/2021/07/02/Armenian-ombudsman/2529421

 

1 July
The Danish national football team will play the European Championship quarter-final against the Czech Republic in Baku in Azerbaijan on Saturday, where the authoritarian government, led by President Ilham Aliyev, uses major sporting and entertainment events to cover up gross human rights violations., reported armradio.am. Amnesty International has presented five things about the country before the match. Torture and other forms of ill-treatment are used by the authorities and prison staff to obtain information and “confessions” from detainees and inmates. Imprisoned protesters following a protest in connection with the war against Armenia were detained in overcrowded, hot rooms without ventilation and with limited access to food and drink. They were allegedly beaten and abused and denied contact to both lawyers and their families. Amnesty has documented that Azerbaijani forces committed war crimes in the war against Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh in 2020. Several verified videos show the treatment of prisoners of war and other detainees, beheadings and desecration of dead soldiers’ bodies.
https://en.armradio.am/2021/07/01/ill-treatment-of-armenian-pows-war-crimes-in-nagorno-karabakh-amnesty-briefs-danish-football-union-ahead-of-baku-match/

 

30 June
Modern Azerbaijan has declared itself not the successor of Soviet Azerbaijan, but the successor of the first Republic of Azerbaijan (1918-1920), but territorial changes took place during the Soviet period. In line with civilnet.am, Map of Soviet Armenia of 1926 shows that there were no enclaves in the Armenian territory. The map also indicates that Nagorno Karabakh Autonomous Oblast included the Armenian-populated district of Shahumyan and had a land connection with Armenia. Yes, Armenia lost the war and has been weakened. However, this should be cause to push even more towards aggressive diplomacy, to formulate clear and perceptible positions for the international community. Armenia’s government should not give in to Azerbaijan’s pressures. After all, this is not an issue so large that it could lead to war. Baku will be using every effort to connect the issues it has with Armenia – border demarcation, enclaves – to Karabakh’s demand for self-determination. Armenia’s foremost problem is to keep these issues separate. By signing any demarcation agreement, Armenia should only recognize its mutual border with Azerbaijan. The question of Karabakh’s self-determination and the international legitimacy of the Nagorno Karabakh Autonomous Oblast (NKAO) borders must be excluded from any agreement.
https://www.civilnet.am/news/624526/armenia-should-not-exchange-enclaves-with-azerbaijan/?lang=en

 

29 June
OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde has once again called on Azerbaijan to release Armenian prisoners of war, resume the negotiations under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs and achieve a political settlement, reported armenpress.am, During a press conference today, commenting on the view that the Armenian society is disappointed with the OSCE’s passive position during the 2020 Nagorno Karabak War and asked whether she shares the view of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev who says that the NK conflict is solved, Ann Linde said: “I don’t agree that the OSCE doesn’t make a lot of efforts for the conflict settlement, for what is happening in Nagorno Karabakh. I have a special representative who is very active. I personally met with him yesterday to discuss the situation. We have an OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairmanship, co-chaired by US, Russia and France which try to make very positive steps”, she said, adding that the Co-Chairs, however, had a limited access to the region last year because of the pandemic and other reasons.
https://armenpress.am/eng/news/1056858.html?fbclid=IwAR3FPTAYWSIUfqVDO94KMKMd5V-rZSPT1E4I5WQnQJW0dMMTe3hyIZjRDsM

 

28 June
Human Rights Defender of Armenia Arman Tatoyan has issued a statement over the actions of the Azerbaijani servicemen on the border with Armenia. Armenpress presents the full text of the statement: “Yesterday, the Azerbaijani military servicemen threatened residents of the Syunik Province Tegh village with firearms in the sovereign territory of Armenia, and did not allow them to gather the harvested grass. Approaching about 150 meters, 5 Azerbaijani armed servicemen directed their weapons to the villagers, started threatening, shouting and not allowing them to collect the grass. The incident took place in a place called Andrun Stones, which is located at the intersection of Tegh, Aravus and Khnatsakh villages of Syunik province. The lands of that place are used by the residents of the three villages. There are both privately owned and community-owned lands. There are pastures used by the residents of these three villages to graze their cattle.The villagers were able to collect the grass only today, on June 27, when the commanders of the 1st Army Corps of theArmenian Armed Forces, the heads of the local self-government bodies went to that place.
https://armenpress.am/eng/news/1056712.html?fbclid=IwAR0cKqVP6x_BzuvSo0pKRu_ixN0cV0cWcPmxaLkU5RMFpILgEepK0BRYmIg

 

27 June
During the 2020 Artsakh War of 2020, Mikayel Hakobyan, a 29-year-old entrepreneur from Armenia now living in France and his friends in Armenia launched an initiative, financed by their own funds and donations, to provide much needed supplies for the war effort. According to hetq.am, they began by delivering medicine to Artsakh from France. Then, at the request of Commandos, Arkady Ter-Tadevosyan, Hakobyan and French-Armenian Gor Haroyan sent about 18,000 survival blankets to Armenia. These contained a reflective covering that would protect Armenian soldiers from drone surveillance. "As a result of the change in the line of contact (border) as a result of the war, there is a need to do a lot of work not only to manage new positions, but also to build new permanent locations, create living conditions and provide all necessary means," the ministry’s reply reads. Azerbaijan has already put at least ten military bases into operation in the occupied territories.
https://hetq.am/en/article/132736

 

26 June
Having obtained the majority of the votes in the June 20 parliamentary elections, Nikol Pashinyan and his Civil Contract party will return to power. According to keghart.org they will form a majority government despite failing to fulfill the promises of the 2018 election and despite suffering a horrendous defeat in last fall’s war against Azerbaijan/Turkey. Robert Kocharyan, Serge Sargsyan, and Nikol Pashinyan each bear a certain share of responsibility for the devastating war and losses in Artsakh. Amazingly two of the culprits and candidates supported by the third have been voted to return to power. Any hope to set up a fact-finding commission to investigate the war failures are thus diminished if not non-existent. The Pashinyan campaign successfully portrayed the fight as between “white” Pashinyan and “black” Kocharyan. Meanwhile, Kocharyan and Armenia Alliance ran unsophisticated campaigns. While Pashinyan celebrates his victory, he should not interpret it as a reflection of his popularity. A significant number voted for him, because he was perceived as less of an evil than Kocharyan or Sargsyan. Many voters’ preference was based on the artificially created perception that the only choice was between bad and worse.
https://keghart.org/editorial-back-to-square-one/

 

Sources: www.asbarez.com, www.panorama.am, www.armradio.am, www.civilnet.am, www.armenpress.am, www.hetq.am, keghart.org

18 October 2021
10 October 2021
27 September 2021
20 September 2021
15 September 2021
07 September 2021
26 July 2021

The Armenian Center for National and International Studies

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