Azerbaijan may have already buried the bodies of killed Armenian soldiers in mass graves, Artsakh presidential chief of staff Artak Beglaryan told Hetq.am.
Beglaryan, who until recently was Artsakh Human Rights Defender, said that reports have been circulating about the mass burials, which is compounding the problem of finding and identifying the bodies of the deceased.
He pledged that the Artsakh government will probe the matter with relevant bodies, including the Russian peacekeeping forces in the region.
He said hundreds of bodies have not been identified yet, admitting that the process has taken longer than expected. Beglaryan said the main obstacle in the process is the DNA identification.
The president’s chief of staff also confirmed to Hetq.am that Artsakh will continue to have its own armed forces, addressing speculation on social media and other circles that efforts were underway to disband the Artsakh Armed Forces.
The issue was also confirmed by Artsakh Foreign Minister David Babayan and National Security advisor Vitaly Balassanyan in recent days.
Beglaryan told Hetq.am that the Artsakh Army will continue ensure the security of Artsakh’s population and will work in conjunction with the Russian peacekeepers stationed in the country.
“Naturally, Azerbaijan would very much like to see no armed people in Artsakh. I think it would very much like to see no Russian peacekeepers. Azerbaijan’s wishes in this respect do not matter,” Beglaryan told Hetq.am.
In a separate interview with News.am, Beglaryan said Russian peacekeepers are carrying out construction projects in the area near the Stepanakert airport with permission from Artsakh authorities.
Asked if the construction efforts were linked to runways or terminals and other facilities of the airport, Beglaryan stated that they are different types projects underway in that area.