Armenia’s Foreign Ministry on Monday accused Azerbaijan of lying about the release of Armenian prisoners of war, saying that holding Armenian captives undermines the implementation of the November 9 agreement.
Yerevan’s reaction came in response to Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Ceyhun Bayramov who told the visiting OSCE Chairman-in-office Ann Linde that Azerbaijan had released all Armenian POWs “in accordance with its obligation,” while, in reality, there are close to 200 Armenians still unaccounted for believed to be held in captivity by Azerbaijan.
“This is another lie by Azerbaijan on this urgent humanitarian issue. The statement of the Azerbaijani Foreign Minister contradicts the other relevant bodies of that country, which have confirmed the presence of dozens of Armenian prisoners of war in Azerbaijan, both during the hostilities and after the establishment of the ceasefire,” Armenia’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Anna Naghdalyan said.
“Azerbaijan has failed to provide information on Armenian prisoners of war to the European Court of Human Rights, which deals with this issue within the framework of the “Armenia v. Azerbaijan” interstate case. The court recently decided to notify the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe in this regard, emphasizing that Azerbaijan has repeatedly violated the deadlines set by the European Court and has not provided complete information. Currently, interim measures are being taken against Azerbaijan with regard to 188 Armenian captives. I must emphasize that non-implementation of interim measures is tantamount to a violation of the European Convention on Human Rights,” said Naghdalyan.
The spokesperson added that Paragraph 8 of the November 9 agreement applies to all prisoners of war and other hostages, and noted that with such statements the Azerbaijani side shows that it deliberately does not fulfill this tripartite statement.