Armenian President sends letter to UN Secretary-General over POW issue

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YEREVAN, APRIL 26, ARMENPRESS. President of Armenia Armen Sarkissian has addressed a letter to UN Secretary-General António Guterres, the President’s Office told Armenpress.

The letter reads:

“The year 2020 has been challenging and difficult for us all. However, for Armenia, 2020 was even more difficult due to the war unleashed by Azerbaijan against Artsakh on September 27, with the active support and direct participation of Turkey.

Despite your call for a global ceasefire under the conditions of COVID-19 pandemic, and the statement condemning the continuing escalation of violence in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone, despite repeated appeals from the international community to immediately stop the war, Azerbaijan’s military-political leadership massively and deliberately targeted the civilian population and infrastructures, blatantly violating the human rights and international humanitarian right norms. This resulted in the loss of thousands of young lives, thousands of disabled people, displacement of population, and destruction of Armenian cultural and historical heritage.

During the war and after it, Armenian military servicemen and civilians became captives who suffer torture and inhuman mistreatment by Azerbaijan.

In conformity with the the trilateral statement on ceasefire of November 9, 2020, the Republic of Armenia has transferred to Azerbaijan all prisoners of war. However, of utmost importance is the fulfillment of the “all for all” principle on exchange of all prisoners of war and civilians taken captive, which is being disregarded by Azerbaijan.

In a gross violation of human rights and international humanitarian commitments, Azerbaijan currently rejects and hampers the return of civilians and prisoners of war, taken hostage.

Armenia expects support from international partners in the issue of the quickest return of all the captives.

I appeal to you and the United Nations to undertake all necessary measures to ensure immediate release and safe return of prisoners of war in conformity with the international humanitarian law”.

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