Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan at the 78th session of the UN General embly spoke about the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh and called on Azerbaijan to fulfill its obligations and ensure freedom of movement through the Lachin corridor, as well as to withdraw the military from Karabakh.
Speaking about the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh, where Azerbaijan had previously carried out “anti-terrorism measures,” Mirzoyan accused the neighboring country of a large-scale attack against the indigenous population of Karabakh of gross violation of the tripartite declaration of November 9, 2020.
“During this inhumane attack, the entire territory of Nagorno-Karabakh, Stepanakert and other cities and towns was subjected to intense and large-scale bombing using heavy military equipment: missiles, artillery, combat drones, aircraft, including prohibited cluster munitions,” he said.
According to him, more than 200 people died as a result, another 400 were injured, and the fate of “hundreds of people” is unknown. In addition, 30% of the population of Karabakh became internally displaced.
Mirzoyan also spoke about the consequences of the blockade of the Lachin corridor since December last year. Baku’s actions, he said, led to an acute shortage of food, medicine, fuel and other essentials.
Armenia has repeatedly expressed to the international community the need for clear actions, including the deployment of a UN interdepartmental mission in Nagorno-Karabakh, but over the past nine months it has failed to help people, Mirzoyan believes. He emphasized that statements that the UN is not on the scene and therefore cannot verify what is happening cannot be an excuse for inaction. Mirzoyan expressed hope that the organization will show “strong political will” to condemn the resumption of hostilities.
Yerevan also calls for a UN interagency mission to be sent to Nagorno-Karabakh to monitor and ess the human rights, humanitarian and security situation on the ground. Unhindered access of UN institutions and other international organizations to Nagorno-Karabakh in accordance with humanitarian principles is mandatory, Mirzoyan emphasized.
“We also believe that the international community should demand the withdrawal of any Azerbaijani military and law enforcement agencies from all civilian settlements in Nagorno-Karabakh to prevent panic, provocation and escalation among the civilian population, and to enable UN-sanctioned peacekeeping forces to maintain stability and security in Nagorno-Karabakh,” Mirzoyan said.
On September 19, Azerbaijan announced the start of “anti-terrorist measures” necessary for the “restoration of the constitutional order” in Nagorno-Karabakh. Baku demanded the dissolution of the regional government and the withdrawal of Armenian troops. Yerevan denied the presence of its troops in the region.
The next day, Karabakh authorities announced the conclusion of agreements on a complete ceasefire. Later this information was confirmed by the Russian Ministry of Defense. On September 21, negotiations were held in Yevlakh between the delegation of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh and representatives of the Azerbaijani authorities.