WASHINGTON—Armenian National Committee of AmericaExecutive Director Aram Hamparian expressed regret at the latest statement by the Heads of Delegation of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group Co-Chair countries in Dublin, Ireland, this week which demonstrated an artificial even-handedness toward Azerbaijan and Armenia, with no mention of the ongoing Aliyev government’s aggression against Armenia and glorification of anti-Armenian attacks, including the praise and promotion of convicted Azerbaijani axe-murderer Ramil Safarov.
Hamparian’s complete statement is available below:
“The Heads of Delegation of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chair countries do a disservice to the cause of peace by, once again, seeking to impose a false symmetry on the Nagorno Karabakh situation.”
“For all their patently political and artificial attempts at evenhandedness, the facts on the ground are undeniable: Azerbaijan is the party that started, and lost, a war aimed at destroying democracy in Artsakh and preventing self-determination for the people of this proud Republic. It is Azerbaijan that regularly commits fatal cross-border attacks, and is threatening to use its rapidly expanding arsenal of arms to restart its open aggression and plunge the region into conflict. It is Baku, not Yerevan, that is rejecting international calls to pull back its snipers and deploy more OSCE observers, and that is vetoing the participation of the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh – the key stakeholder in any enduring settlement – from full participation in the peace process.”
“It is an act of undeserved charity to the Azerbaijani regime of Ilham Aliyev to call on both parties to refrain from acts of enmity, when the record shows that the only state-sponsored incitement to hatred has come from Baku – through both words and actions. Examples include Azerbaijan’s cross-border, fatal attacks on Armenia during Secretary Clinton’s visit this summer to the region, as well as the Azerbaijani military’s documented destruction and desecration of the Armenian cemetery in Djulfa. More recently, of course, was President Ilham Aliyev’s pardon and promotion of an unapologetic axe-murderer, Ramil Safarov, who is, today, hailed as a hero in Azerbaijan for killing an Armenian officer, Gurgen Margaryan, while he slept, during a 2004 NATO training exercise in Hungary.”
“Inventing a pretend parity between the parties may serve some political purpose, but, sadly, such contrived statements by the OSCE Minsk Group do nothing to advance the cause of peace.”