Azerbaijan’s Carte Blanche to Destroy Monuments

BY ARA KHACHATOURIAN

We have extensively criticized Armenia’s foreign policy and diplomatic efforts vis-à-vis the protocols and the Karabakh conflict resolution process, but a small news item Thursday prompts us to warn that someone’s asleep at the wheel again.

UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, voted to admit Azerbaijan on its body that oversees the preservation of cultural monuments around the world. The Azeri news item points out that Armenia did not get the necessary votes to be included in this important body.

For over a decade now Azerbaijan has been mounting a two-pronged policy where, on the one hand, it is systematically destroying Armenian cultural monuments in Nakhichevan and elsewhere in Azerbaijan, while, on the diplomatic front waging an international campaign to accuse Armenia of doing the same.

Our publication has extensively covered Azerbaijan’s campaign to eradicate Armenian historical monuments and efforts by Armenian NGO’s, and to a certain extent governments to shed light on this cultural Genocide.

Yet when push comes to shove, the diplomatic corps, especially those guiding our representations at the UN, have fallen short.

For years, planned visits by UNESCO officials have been postponed and cancelled and Armenia’s efforts to shed light on this critical matter have gone on deaf ears. Now, Azerbaijan not only will ensure that relevant UNESCO bodies will visit the region, they will also stage this junket to meet their needs and correspond to their destructive policies.

When Armenian Revolutionary Federation Parliamentary bloc chairman Vahan Hovannesian raised the imperative for new blood in the foreign ministry and in Armenia’s diplomatic circles, he was alluding to the tired nature of our diplomatic activities in comparison to the excess noise that usually surrounds Azeri efforts.

Several years ago, Azerbaijan’s diplomats maneuvered a resolution at the UN Security Council, which, in no uncertain terms characterized Armenia as an “aggressor.” Just last month, again due to Azeri efforts, the European Parliament approved a report urging the immediate withdrawal of Armenians from the liberated territories surrounding the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic.

In response to the UN Security Council decision, Armenia was quick to point out that the international powers—US, Russia, France and other European countries—abstained from the vote and condemned the discussion of the Karabakh conflict outside the framework of the OSCE. A similar response was also provided for last month’s debacle, with Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian saying that the countries involved in the mediation process had unequivocally declared that only the OSCE was mandated with dealing with the Karabakh issue. Let’s not even revisit the deafening silence from official Yerevan during most of the protocols process.

A clear pattern of reacting rather than initiating can be seen in Armenia’s maneuvering of important foreign policy issues and its lack of activism is paving the way for others to step in claim legitimacy.

Just how active was Armenia’s UN Mission in lobbying for membership in the UNESCO committee? Perhaps, we will never know. But what is crystal clear is that Azerbaijan just secured a carte blanche to continue the savage desecration of Armenian monuments and perpetuation of its destructive policies.

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16 Comments

  1. Raffi said:

    What we are seeing is Azerbaijan’s Petro dollar starting to bear fruit…Capitalist society money talks.

  2. Raffi said:

    Mehriban Arif qizi Aliyeva (Azerbaijani: Mehriban Arif qızı Əliyeva) (born 26 August 1964, Baku) is a qualified doctor, member of the National Assembly of Azerbaijan, wife of the current president of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, chair of numerous charitable and cultural organizations.

  3. FrankM said:

    All United Nations bodies are corrupt
    The only Body that should count is The United Armenians Body
    I know that there is no such thing but what I am trying to say is Armenians must make their own rules

  4. Antranig Bedrossian said:

    This is not a surprise. Many Armenian diplomats are busy in improving themselves and shopping abroad.
    While top responsible people on the executive level (president, prime minister, ministers) are also busy in enrichening themselves or stealing from foreign funds or robbing the Armenian peope inside the country. We should also remember the head of the foreign ministry is the president and not just the foreign minister. any foreign minister active enough could have been dismissed by a president, (kocharyan or Sarkssian) who were or are busy amassing wealth. Armenia needs shake up from top down. ARF-Armenia cannot be helpful in this, as ARF leaders during that period were busy covering up mistakes and errors of Kocharyan regime. Vahan Hovhannissian is as unreliable as any other minister. It seems he is aiming for the position of foreign ministry, that is why he is talking. Where was he before? Why did he and the others joined Serje Sarkissian`s government. ARF-Armenia also bears responsiblity, albeit lesser, in this kind of affairs. Yes, Armenia`s foreign ministry needs serious improvements, but it is not ARF-Armenia that can do that. ARF-Armenia does not inspire trust and they have nothing to do with Krisdapor, Rostom and Zavarian`s legacy.

    • Zareh said:

      It seems to me that ARF-Armenia instead of asserting itself on the political scene they are choosing an environment that is lesser of the two evils. When HHSh was in power ARF found itself under a constant and effective target of the authorities. It is clear that ARF in Armenia has not gotten over that trauma and now it is afraid to openly position itself against the current rulers.
      One has to only read the escapist, overly polite, almost kowtowing way of addressing the “wrongs” of the authorities, quickly following by praising the “accomplishments” of Sarksian’s government. If there is anything that should happen it’s the complete shakedown of ARF-Armenia leadership. They have proven to be a terribly mediocre bunch.

      • Zareh said:

        As for the fiasco of Azerbaijan having been elected in UNESCO…. Only a loser’s mentality can console this defeat by attributing it to the enemy’s oh-so-strong capabilities in money and power. If this is case then let’s pack and evacuate Artsakh today.

        The UNESCO case is Armenia’s defeat rather than Azerbaijan’s victory.

  5. Grish Begian said:

    Ara Abramiam and Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva, should engage oral conversation about Armenian monuments in Azerbaijan……..
    Projects and activities supported by UNESCO Goodwill Ambassadors
    # Mr Ara Abramian – Dialogue among Civilizations
    # Mrs Mehriban Aliyeva – Promotion and safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage, especially oral traditions and expressions

  6. john papazian said:

    How is it that the rightous right in this country doesn’t have it’s collective moral outrage in an uproar? These “monuments” are churches,in most cases they are scences of a horrible crime called genocide. One of the right wing radio types got all pompus talking about the persicution of Christians and at the same time defending Turkey as a friend to the US. If there were a systematic destruction of churches,monostarys,and convents elsewhere in Europe you could bet the FOX News types would be there in a second having a tea party or something.”Asleep at the switch” more like in a coma,buts alright ,they can’t destroy everything can they?

  7. Mike said:

    Let’s stop dwelling in a world of illusions and call things by its name: “The world does not want Armenians on this planet”. Turks and Azeris are the tools of removal. The world indirectly creates conditions for them to succeed. They gave our lands to Turks and Azers and now we labeled as aggressor just because we want to live. Can’t you see where it’s doing? We need to look for real reason why it’s like that. Is it because we were first nation to fall into grand scheme called Christianity and now it’s time for God’s punishment? Or maybe because of Hayk killed Babylonian Bel who is good of Satanists who rule the world? Or maybe it’s just because we were too ignorant and too lazy to kill when Mongolian tribes settled in our lands? Well, in either case it’s time to stop hoping that prostitute will sleep for free. Our conventional weapons can’t provide Armenia’s security in modern times. Armenia need’s more effective weapons or it’s time to change our last names.

  8. Mazod said:

    Again, Khrimian Hayrig…”Yergateh Sherep”. LEARN FROM HISTORY. Armenian officials: STOP BEING CORRUPT. HELP BUILD, EDUCATE, EMPLOY & STRENGTHEN YOUR NATION. Stop building churches and start building tanks. The strength of God is important but so is the strength of your military. It is a shame: with such an intelligent citizenry, Armenia is flushing itself down the toilet. LEARN FROM HISTORY.

  9. MihranK said:

    It is the defeat of Armenian diplomacy at the UN and other international bodies over so many issues, until we have diplomats batting for Armenia nothing will change, what we have now is a bunch of STATE TOURISTS at the expense of the state enjoying themselves that’s all.

  10. Nairian said:

    It is very unfortunate that we don’t have true patriots like the ones of Avedis Aharonian, Kherimian Hayrig, Aram Manougian, Karekin Nejteh, General Silikian, Zoravar Tero, Serop Aghpur, Arapo and as of late Monte Melkonian. That’s what Armenia needs, the likes of the people mentioned above. True patriots and knowledgeable in politics and above all workers and doers towards one goal – preservation and the amelioration of all Armenian soils/lands. Thinking and breathing every day for our country and for our people in our Republic. If Krisdapor Mikaelian was the vision of Tashnagtsoutyun, Zavarian didn’t put up with any nonsense or bad behaviours amongst his people. He was demanding and stayed very strong on his beliefs, on his values and his morals. That’s why they were great then and stayed great for a 100 years; because they didn’t put up with “tavajans”, with lyers, thugs and thieves. They either had to shape up or to be shipped out. That’s what we need within the Armenian people; the strength, the vision and the morality of Zavarians to rule Armenia.

    Nairian

  11. Nairian said:

    I also agree with some of the comments above that too many diplomats as well as the government in Armenia are definitely sleeping on the wheel. The “azeris” are the attackers and Armenia is always the defenders. Just like in our history books; the Mongolian Turks charged in our soils with their “yataghan” swords and they were the attackers; while we were always defending ourselves. And today in politics, we are doing the same. We are lame and acting like sheep. Unaware of what is going on within the world organizations and we aren’t initiating or even defending ourselves; when on every stage and podium we have the right of way. Most of the time, Armenia is silent to the war rhetorics. In 18 years after we won the war in Artsakh, the “azeris” lost the war but they never put their swords down. They are constantly doing war rhetorics, bellicosing, stirring trouble, propaganda, lying that it was their lands and we are sitting on their lands. Constant propaganda against us on the internet, on the news all over the world. They never put their swords down, but what is Armenia doing against the enemy? Most of the time lamely defending themselves or keeping their silent. It’s very wrong policy. We are in the right, yet we do not act like ones. We act as though the “azeri” loser vermins are. This kind of behaviour, the lack of patriotism, the lack of knowledge and laziness must stop or else. Or else it won’t be good for us in the end.

  12. Varoujan said:

    Guys,guys it’s not through blame game panic, nor with loose faith that we shall prevail, but with the ideology “United we stand”, Since the nation became officially Christian It was fortold and well aware of the persecutions to follow and was conceived with an open heart, like a rose with thorns, but the responsibility of sticking together no matter what which is called patriotism stands on everyone’s shoulder, who is an Armenian.
    It’s true about AZ with money that talks, yet Armenia has something that screams which has been neglected for years, it takes seven days for Armenia to accomplish what has taken years for Pakistan or India, today we live in the era of push buttons that are able to change the course in history
    therefore our friend in need is our friend indeed, keeping in mind the greedy setting up rules controling the media even in times of war games, so the gladiators can keep generating profits for them,.

  13. Mazod said:

    DEAR VAROUJAN…what are you blathering about?

    History has shown that Armenians can not govern themselves. Period. As the filthy (t)urks stated, we are the “loyal millet” and live well under the control of foreign nations.

    Every Armenian has an opinion and things s/he is better than their next door neighbor. The tiny piece of homeland that we have left can not even be governed effectively, responsibly and transparently.

    Armenia must be cleansed from its filthy, corrupt, and God-less officials whose thirst for money and power will never be quenched. Year after year, we will have a new batch of elected scoundrels whose sole mission will be to screw the Armenian people and steal money from the Diaspora and international bodies and agencies.

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