Helsinki Citizens' Assembly-Vanadzor

December 15. The process of exchanging captives commenced. 44 captives were transferred from Azerbaijan to Armenia

December 15, 2020

Activities | Peacebuilding | Project։ Stability of HCA Vanadzor in the light of democracy and human rights challenges in the Republic of Armenia 2020 | Peaceful Regulation of Conflicts | Publications | News

On 15 December 2020, 44 captives, including civilians taken captive, were transferred from Azerbaijan to Armenia. Some of them were taken captive before September 27. 


The Bureau of the Representative of Armenia to the European Court of Human Rights reports that the RA Government had appealed to the European Court of Human Rights to apply interim measures regarding the 26 of them.


The RA Deputy Prime Minister Tigran Avinyan reported on his Facebook page that at this stage, the Armenian captives, whose captivity is confirmed by Azerbaijan and the Red Cross, are being returned. Earlier, RA Prime Minister’s Press Secretary Mane Gevorgyan mentioned that this was the first group of captives.


Some days ago, Tigran Avinyan reported that by the mediation of the Russian side, three Armenian captives were transferred to the Armenian side. With regard to the missing persons, on December 9, he reported in the RA National Assembly that since November 10, 846 bodies had been taken out of the battlefield.


The Human Rights Defenders of Armenia and Artsakh/NK published a new joint report on “Organized hate speech and animosity towards ethnic Armenians in Azerbaijan as root causes of ethnically-based torture and inhuman treatment by Azerbaijani Armed Forces”. The RA Human Rights Defender also presented evidence of the Azerbaijani side’s cruelties against ethnic Armenians to the Head of the Danish Delegation to PACE and during the meeting with Lynne Tracy, USA Ambassador to Armenia.


On the eve, made a publication on the beheading of ethnic Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh.


The RA Human Rights Defender completed the study and legal formulations regarding the new evidence on cases of Azeris illegally seizing passwords of the Armenian side’s captives’ social network accounts and managing those pages.


During the military event taking place in the capital of Azerbaijan on December 10, the President of Azerbaijan announced as if Zangezur, Sevan Lake and Yerevan (Republic of Armenia) are historic lands of Azerbaijan. After that, the President of Turkey glorified the organizers and performers of the Armenian Genocide in the Ottoman Empire and the massacre of Armenians in September 1918 in Baku. Besides the aforementioned, the speeches of both Azerbaijan and Turkey presidents were filled with insults, hate-generating expressions and threats to the life and health of the Armenian people and the whole  population of Armenia, The Human Rights Defender of Armenia calls on the worldwide international community to react and take substantive preventive measures with regards to those issues, which are in breach of fundamental principles of international law and undermine the whole international system human rights and humanitarian protection.


The International Committee of the Red Cross started operations of search for missing servicemen in the area of Zangelan.


Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the UN Secretary-General, stated,The UN maintains its intention to send its mission to Nagorno-Karabakh and calls on all sides to cooperate for its early arrival in the region”.


On December 12, the RA Ministry of Defense reported that the units of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces, having accumulated additional personnel and military equipment, including heavy artillery assets and grossly violating the requirements of the trilateral statement signed on November 9, launched an attack in the direction of the villages of Hin Tagher and Khtsaberd of Hadrut Province of the Republic of Artsakh/NK.


On December 14, the Republic of Artsakh/NK Ombudsman Artak Beglaryan reported about his visit to Shushi region Mets Shen and Hin Shen villages. He recorded that the actions of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces obviously not only violated the agreements of the highest political level, but also caused  vital threats especially to the population of Hin Shen village, including the physical safety of a group of children and women. In his words, these threats persist till now due to the positions taken and behavior manifested by the Azerbaijani servicemen. According to him, some units of the Defense Army and RF peacekeeping contingent control the situation on the site, due to which, no incident had been recorded.


The OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs issued a statement to sum up their visit to the region.


The UNESCO Committee for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict adopted a declaration on ensuring cultural property protection in and around Nagorno-Karabakh and setting-up an independent technical mission.


See also: December 7. The Republic of Artsakh/Nagorno-Karabakh President Arayik Harutyunyan says that Azerbaijan has confirmed the names of fewer captives than the Armenian side’s evidence shows

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