British Delegation Visits Karabagh Azeris Unhappy

STEPANAKERT (Combined Sources)–Azerbaijan’s foreign affairs ministry sent a letter to the British government protesting a visit by a British parliamentary delegation to Karabagh–headed by member of the House of Commons Gordon Marsden–and Deputy Speaker of the House of Lords Baroness Caroline Cox.

The letter of protest assesses the visit as a "violation of Azerbaijan’s rights." Denouncing the visit as "illegal," the letter asks that the members of British parliament be more sensitive to the feelings of the Azeri people.

The British delegation arrived in Karabagh on October 20 and met with Mountainous Karabagh Republic President Arkady Ghukasian and National Assembly Chairman Oleg Yesayan.

President Ghukasian–expressing gratitude for the visit–said it was another opportunity for the people of Karabagh to make their position heard in Europe.

Ghukasian briefed the delegation members on Karabagh’s recent achievemen’s in such areas as human rights protection and building a democratic state based on rule of law. He also spoke about the favorable conditions for non-governmental organizations to carry out their work. The delegation is scheduled to meet representatives of Karabagh’s NGOs.

Ghukasian then spoke about the conflict regulation process–affirming that Karabagh’s leadership deems the maintenance of the ceasefire as a key point for its population’s security.

Gordon Marsden said the visit allowed for them to learn first-hand information about Karabagh and its people–as their purpose was to determine the volume of humanitarian assistance.

Meanwhile–the Azeri Organization for Karabagh Liberation held a protest near the British Embassy in Baku on Wednesday and placed a black wreath in front of the embassy. Also–unidentified assailants wrote the name of Baroness Cox on the memorial to British soldiers killed in Baku in 1918 using black paint. Police arrived at the scene and removed paint off the memorial.

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