Elections in Karabakh are against international law

 Elections in Karabakh are against international law

The statement of the Azerbaijani foreign ministry that holding the so-called self-government bodies’ elections by the separatist regime of Nagorno-Karabakh scheduled for September 13th 2015 is an open violation of international law and cannot have any legal force, because the regime in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan is ultimately nothing other than a product of aggression and racial discrimination.

This regime is under Armenia’s control and survives by virtue of its military, political, financial and other support, as was confirmed recently by the European Court of Human Rights in its judgement on the case of Chiragov and others versus Armenia.

The holding of the so-called elections in Karabakh by Yerevan strengthens the policy of occupation and shows its unwillingness to settle the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict peacefully.

The Republic of Azerbaijan calls on all members of the international community not to recognize the legitimacy of these 'elections' and Armenia to cease its policy of annexation and ethnic cleansing, engage constructively in the conflict settlement process and comply with its international obligations.

The political analyst, Doctor of Historical Sciences Vefa Kurban, told Vestnik Kavkaza that holding the so-called elections in Nagorno-Karabakh is an open violation of international law. "Nagorno-Karabakh is historically Azerbaijani territory. The elections are out of the question," she said.

"The UN Security Council published the resolutions on the occupation of Azerbaijani lands by the Armenian aggressor. International law refuses to recognize the legitimacy of the position established as a result of these actions. Thus, the holding of elections in Nagorno-Karabakh is an open violation of international law and cannot have any legal force," Vefa Kurban concluded.

According to political analyst Burhan Özkoşar, elections are an element of a democratic state. "The elections in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan have no international legal status, as it is impossible to speak of democracy in a region which is under occupation. While the invaders do not leave the occupied territories, we can't speak about any democracy," he noted.

"Armenia, which has positioned itself as a country which suffered genocide, has committed genocide in Karabakh itself, and the world community must recognize it and settle the Karabakh issue," Burhan Özkoşar said.

Political analyst Hussein Altynalan also expressed his view on the situation. "The elections in Nagorno-Karabakh are illegal, because these territories are under occupation. These so-called elections are an open violation of international law and the decisions of the UN Security Council. Such actions will further exacerbate the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh and bring every peace effort to a standstill," he stressed.

An expert of Vestnik Kavkaza, deputy head of the M.V. Lomonosov MSU Information and Analysis Center, Andrey Petrov, pointed out that the upcoming 'elections' fit into the overall context of preventing a settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. "It is clear that any ostentatious pseudo-political, pseudo-democratic activity on the occupied territories will cause not only the mandatory diplomatic protests from the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry, but also an irritation of the Azerbaijani leadership. In fact, the purpose of these 'elections' is to provoke Baku's refusal to conduct a dialogue. Armenia does not want any settlement of the Nagorno- Karabakh conflict in the framework of international law, and therefore it is making every effort to hinder the negotiating process," the expert explained.

"You should note that the 'elections' will be held two days before the start of the 70th session of the UN General Assembly in New York, during which Ilham Aliyev and Serzh Sargsyan could meet in order to confirm the commitment of the parties to the peace settlement. However, the presidents will not meet on the sidelines of the General Assembly, the negotiations will take place at the level of Foreign Ministers. It is possible to assume that the date was selected by the separatists on the basis of considerations of delaying a resolution process which is undesirable for them," Andrey Petrov added.

"A few days after the meeting in Paris there was an attack on the Azerbaijani Armed Forces by an Armenian helicopter. This provocation anulled both the progress made over the previous three meetings of the Presidents and the chances of a new round of negotiations in the near future. In 2015, provocations continued. The purpose of such actions is to maintain the highest levels of irritation in Azerbaijan, because Baku does not only have to defend Azerbaijan against the attacks of invaders, but then make excuses in front of the international community," he believes.

As a result, the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was in a 'warming up' state until today, but its settlement, on the contrary, was 'frozen'," Petrov stressed. "And these so-called elections on the occupied territories are one more step in its inhibition. In general, it is a bad strategy, but Yerevan has no other way to preserve the status quo now. Armenia must carry out the verdict of the ECHR in the case of Chiragov and others versus Armenia and the only way to do this is to warm up the conflict, creating the appearance of the impossibility of a peaceful settlement. In the absence of international sanctions or any other pressure, Yerevan can follow this tactic for a long time," the expert of Vestnik Kavkaza, deputy head of the M.V. Lomonosov MSU Information and Analysis Center concluded.

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