YEREVAN (ARMENPRESS)—Member of the Armenian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) Samvel Farmanyan warned Assembly members of a new fascist regime forming in Azerbaijan in a speech delivered on behalf of the European People’s Party.
In his speech, Farmanyan drew attention to Azerbaijan’s violation of human rights and fundamental freedoms, reminding delegates of the more than 100 opposition leaders and human rights activists currently imprisoned in Azerbaijan.
Commenting on the refugee crisis currently gripping Europe, Farmanyan said, “How far and how comprehensively do we address the core reasons for the recent situation? Should we not address those core reasons that allowed the situation to grow and confront us now?”
“Closed societies, autocratic forms of governance, crackdowns on the seeds of civil society, and the rejection of human rights and fundamental freedoms reflect dictatorship, xenophobia, hatred and the crystallization of a fascist regime, which can lead to devastation and the suffering of millions. This is the fourth day that I have spent at the Parliamentary Assembly and wherever I have been, whether at a group, committee, or plenary meeting, I have often heard about Azerbaijan. It is one of the most mentioned countries in the Assembly.”
Farmanyan noted that ahead of Azerbaijan’s upcoming parliamentary elections, scheduled to take place on November 1, President Ilham Aliyev is, “on the one hand fostering his anti-European rhetoric – in effect blaming all European institutions – and anti-Armenian hatred, and jailing dozens more human rights activists, and on the other hand is escalating the situation on the front line with Nagorno-Karabakh. What should be the conclusion?”
“We should pay attention to all those facts if a new fascist regime is to to be crystallized on the eastern shore of the bigger European family,” Farmanyan concluded.