Vigenin: I’m not authorized to accuse any side over April events

Tbilisi. Nizami Mammadzade – APA. OSCE PA Special Representative on the South Caucasus Kristian Vigenin (MP, Bulgaria) spoke to APA’s Georgia bureau about his interview titled “Baku should assure that crimes against the civilian population are unacceptable for them” that was published by Armenian-news –


An APA correspondent addresses some questions to the OSCE PA special representative.


- Your interview with one of the Armenian media outlets caused discussions among the Azerbaijani public. I would like to know your opinion on this issue.


I was given detailed information by the Azerbaijani side about the crimes committed by Armenia during the April events


- That interview of mine which you mentioned should not be misunderstood. I have no authority to hold any side responsible for any crime. I was given detailed information by the Azerbaijani side about the crimes committed by Armenia during the April events. In the interview, I wanted to emphasize that we have no opportunities or mechanism for an independent investigation enabling us to say who is responsible for such crimes. From this perspective, I would like to stress that I’m not authorized to accuse any party over the April events. On the contrary, I am responsible for contributing to peace, prevent further military clashes, and help prevent war crimes and human losses on the contact line and anywhere in the region.


 - In a question you were asked in the interview the actions of the Azerbaijani side are compared to those of the “Islamic State” terrorist group (IS aka ISIL, ISIS or Daesh).


I don't think we can compare IS to Azerbaijan or the Azerbaijani army in any way


- I have to say that part of my answer was removed from the text of the interview. I don't think we can compare IS to Azerbaijan or the Azerbaijani army in any way. It is an extreme exaggeration. I reiterate that there should be a mechanism to investigate such claims. I have never heard that Azerbaijan is in collaboration with IS, nor do I believe it. In this respect, we should focus on a more pragmatic, more cooperative approach and avoid using means of propaganda. We need to avoid emotions and past disappointments. Rather, we need to think about the future. We have a real chance to achieve a comprehensive settlement of the conflict and we should contribute to this.


- In the interview, the author tried to hint the atrocities allegedly committed by the Azerbaijani side…


- Casualties are occurred during the war. There are allegations about the atrocities committed by both sides. I can’t say what is right, what is wrong. Such issues should be freely investigated. Otherwise, these allegations will remain unfounded. Of course, it’s necessary to find out who committed the crimes, but what’s more important is that all of us should stand for peace, do our outmost to achieve progress through negotiations. Otherwise such cases will be repeated and clashes will occur on the contact line of the troops. Neither the Armenian, nor the Azerbaijani people deserve it. They deserve peace and we must do everything possible for this. 

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/ 16 July , 2018