Azerbaijan says Armenia’s actions contradict basic principles of Christianity
Armenia’s actions aimed at looting the property and exploiting natural resources in the occupied Azerbaijani territories, wiping out and misappropriating material and cultural values belonging to the Azerbaijani people and its unsuccessful attempt to change the demographic situation constitute a flagrant violation of international humanitarian law, including the obligations undertaken by Armenia under the Geneva conventions, Hikmat Hajiyev, spokesman for the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry, told APA on Thursday.
“The misappropriation by Armenia of the historical Albanian-Christian heritage and temples in Azerbaijan’s occupied lands and the construction of a church in the occupied Jabrayil district, where Armenians never lived, are nothing but an attempt to give a religious color to the conflict and impede the resolution of the conflict through the mediation of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs on the basis of the proposals put forward,” Hajiyev said. “It’s upsetting that Armenian clerics is showing a particular zeal in this provocative process that is in contrast with religious values.”
Hajiyev stressed that such attempts made by Armenia and its church run contrary not only to international humanitarian law but also to the basic principles of Christianity and the teachings of the Gospels that encourage peace, respect for others’ property, and avoidance of taking people’s lives and other acts of aggression.
“This particular provocation from Armenia will be brought up accordingly at international organizations,” he added.
Armenians have recently held the opening of church (Virgin Mary) in the occupied Azerbaijani district of Jabrayil.
The construction of the church has been funded by Gregory Movsesian.
The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict entered its modern phase when the Armenian SRR made territorial claims against the Azerbaijani SSR in 1988.
A fierce war broke out between Azerbaijan and Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan. As a result of the war, Armenian armed forces occupied some 20 percent of Azerbaijani territory which includes Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent districts (Lachin, Kalbajar, Aghdam, Fuzuli, Jabrayil, Gubadli and Zangilan), and over a million Azerbaijanis became refugees and internally displaced people.
The military operations finally came to an end when Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in Bishkek in 1994.
Dealing with the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is the OSCE Minsk Group, which was created after the meeting of the CSCE (OSCE after the Budapest summit held in December 1994) Ministerial Council in Helsinki on 24 March 1992. The Group’s members include Azerbaijan, Armenia, Russia, the United States, France, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Belarus, Finland and Sweden.
Besides, the OSCE Minsk Group has a co-chairmanship institution, comprised of Russian, the US and French co-chairs, which began operating in 1996.
Resolutions 822, 853, 874 and 884 of the UN Security Council, which were passed in short intervals in 1993, and other resolutions adopted by the UN General Assembly, PACE, OSCE, OIC, and other organizations require Armenia to unconditionally withdraw its troops from Nagorno-Karabakh.
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