Ali Hasanov: Azerbaijanis must return to their ancestral lands, Armenians must live there together with them

Ali Hasanov: Azerbaijanis must return to their ancestral lands, Armenians must live there together with them
# 15 March 2018 16:45 (UTC +04:00)

Unfortunately, the over-two-decade-old Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict remains unsettled due to the continuation of Armenia’s occupation policy and territorial claims, Ali Hasanov, Assistant to the President of Azerbaijan for Public and Political Issues.

He made the remarks at a panel titled “Majorities Versus Minorities”, which was held as part of the 6th Global Baku Forum in Baku on March 15, APA reports.

Hasanov reminded that the seven statements and four resolutions passed by the UN Security Council in regard to the Armenian occupation of Azerbaijani territories call for an unconditional withdrawal of Armenian troops from the occupied territories.

“Armenia still ignores the UN requirements. The OSCE documents also emphasize the importance of the territorial integrity, border inviolability and sovereignty of Azerbaijan,” he said.

Hasanov went on to say that the documents adopted by the PACE also accentuate the importance of fulfillment of the demands put forth in the UN resolutions in regard to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

“The EU also backs the settlement of the conflict within Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity. Moreover, the documents passed at NATO summits in various years also express support for Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity,” he said.

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has displayed the fairest and most objective position towards the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict as it is the first international organization to recognize Armenia as an aggressor and call for an end to this aggression, the president’s assistant stressed.

He noted that although organizations such as the UN, OSCE and the Council of Europe confirm the Armenian occupation of Azerbaijani lands, they tend to avoid explicitly condemning the invasion and pressuring Armenia to fulfill the demands put forth in the UN resolutions through international mechanisms of influence.

“In the best case scenario, the UN, the OSCE, the EU, as well as the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs, who are involved in the peace-building process, are making an effort to settle the conflict by option to “look for compromising positions between the two countries” and “leave it to them to come to compromise on their own”. As a result, the status quo has remained for years. On the other hand, the conflict remains frozen due to Armenia’s continuation of unconstructive position in the negotiations mediated by the Minsk Group and the failure of the Minsk Group member states to take a unified position in relation to the problem,” Hasanov added.

According to the president’s aide, some international organizations believe that the conflict should be resolved by “both sides” and they should guarantee that “the agreement will not be violated.

Hasanov also touched upon the claims put forward by the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh regarding the right to self-determination.

“In accordance with international law, the self-determination of national minorities can not be realized in the form of violation of the territorial integrity of other states,” he emphasized.

He went on to say: “It should be taken into account that the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh, like Armenians in other countries, are one of the national minorities living in Azerbaijan, and their territorial claims run contrary to international law. In this issue, Azerbaijan’s position is that Azerbaijanis must return to Nagorno-Karabakh – their ancestral lands –, and Armenians must live there together with them. President Ilham Aliyev repeatedly noted in his speeches that self-determination claims put forward by the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh contradict international law, and the Armenians have already realized their right to self-determination by creating the Armenian state. As the President of Azerbaijan states, if Armenians in each country will put forward self-determination claims, it is difficult to say what it will lead to.”

Azerbaijan, warning the world community about possible threats of the Nagorno-Karabakh to the region, urges an end to Armenia’s occupation policy, Hasanov stressed.

Nagorno Garabagh