Ombudsperson: Issue of Azerbaijanis held hostage by Armenia is on agenda

Ombudsperson: Issue of Azerbaijanis held hostage by Armenia is on agenda
# 09 December 2016 09:09 (UTC +04:00)

The issue of Azerbaijanis – Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev, who were taken hostage by Armenians in occupied Kalbajar district of Azerbaijan, is on the agenda, Azerbaijan's Human Rights Commissioner Elmira Suleymanova (Ombudsperson) told reporters on Friday.

“I have had meetings and discussions with the ICRC head about Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev, both of whom are in Armenian hostage. They affirmed that their imprisonment by an illegal court runs contrary to international law,” she said.

Suleymanova noted that the ICRC has given a written response to her requests in this regard.

“The letter of response said they cannot intervene in the legal aspects of this issue and that it is left to the two states to negotiate this problem and give permission for them to meet their families,” she said, adding. “We constantly bring this problem up. The ICRC meets them regularly, giving their letters to their families. The state and we ourselves try to solve this problem.”

In July of 2014, Russian citizen Dilgam Asgarov and Azerbaijani citizen Shahbaz Guliyev were taken hostage and another Azerbaijani citizen Hasan Hasanov was shot to death by the Armenian servicemen while trying to visit their homeland in Kalbajar.

Hasan Hasanov’s body was taken from the enemy and buried in Baku.

On December 19, 2014, the “court” of the separatist regime in occupied Nagorno-Karabakh sentenced Dilgam Asgarov to life in prison, Shahbaz Guliyev to 22 years in prison.

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 Dec.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.

Nagorno Garabagh