NIKOL PASHINYAN, Prime Minister of Armenia, presented his Government’s proposals on the solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Recalling 44 days of war which killed thousands of people in the fall of 2020, he pointed out that the aggression was accompanied by numerous gross violations of international law by the Azerbaijani armed forces.
He went on to note that a trilateral ceasefire statement was signed on 9 November 2020, with peacekeeping forces of the Russian Federation deployed in the Nagorno-Karabakh region. His Government also set out in its 2021-2026 action plan the goal of opening an era of peaceful development, in order to overcome the hostility in the region through dialogue. However, violations of the ceasefire, along with aggressive and insulting statements against Armenia and its people continue to escalate hostilities, he said.
Contrary to article 8 of the 9 November 2020 ceasefire statement, Azerbaijan still holds and has sentenced many Armenian captives to years of imprisonment on trumped-up charges, with evidence also indicating incidents of killing and torture, he continued. Another example of the deepening of hostilities was that of the opening of a so-called trophy park in Baku, where Azerbaijani school children were taken on excursions to watch the mannequins of captured, killed or bleeding Armenian soldiers. It was extremely important to open regional communications and to build interconnected transport arteries of the region, he stressed.
He called for the completion of the process of returning prisoners of war, hostages and other captives without delay. It was also necessary to resume the peace process for the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict under the auspices of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group Co-Chairs. Recalling the incident when Azerbaijan armed forces infiltrated the Sotk-Khoznavar section of its territory in May, he suggested that both the Armenia and Azerbaijan armed forces should withdraw simultaneously from that section to the Soviet times border. International observers would be deployed along that border and delimitation and demarcation would then begin under international auspices.
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