Armenia asked the International Court of Justice on Tuesday to reject Azerbaijan’s request for interim measures against Armenia, calling Baku’s attempts to build a case against Armenia “unrealistic” and “insincere.”
After Armenia presented its case against Azerbaijan at the ICJ on Monday, it was Azerbaijan’s turn to present its case in front of the United Nations court.
Amid the weeks long blockade of Artsakh, Azerbaijan asked the ICJ to compel Armenia to stop mining in what it called “Azerbaijani territories” and accused Armenia of transporting mines to Karabakh through the Lachin Corridor, the only road connecting Artsakh to Armenia, which has been closed since December 12 because of protests staged by so-called Azerbaijani environmental activists.
In his statement to the ICJ, Azerbaijan’s representative Elnur Mammadov demanded urgent measures against Armenia, arguing that they have new evidence.
“Azerbaijan has new evidence that Armenia continues to mine Azerbaijani territories. In 2021, more than 2,700 Armenian-made mines were found in Azerbaijan. Most of the mines were found in civilian territories, he noted. Amid the blockade of the Lachin corridor, the only road connecting Nagorno-Karabakh to the outside world, Baku demanded that the UN International Court of Justice compel Armenia to stop mining Azerbaijani territories and using the Lachin road to transport mines to Karabakh,” Mammadov told the court.
Armenia’s representative on international legal tribunals Yeghishe Kirakosyan urged the court to reject Azerbaijan’s claims.
“As the legal advisers have shown, Azerbaijan’s request for interim measures is an insincere and unrealistic request. It is designed to create a false impression of equality. Based on the oral presentations, Armenia respectfully asks the Court to completely reject Azerbaijan’s request for interim measures,” Kirakosyan told the panel of jurists.
In his remarks, Kirakosyan also responded to Azerbaijan’s false claims that Armenia is transporting landmines through the Lachin Corridor and placing them near settlements, saying that Baku had collected the mines that they purport to have been transported to Karabakh form the sovereign territory of Armenia.
“Armenia has placed mines in its sovereign territory for purely defensive purposes, taking into account repeated acts of aggression by Azerbaijan. Armenia does not place mines outside its sovereign territory, especially in civilian areas, and does not attempt to target citizens based on race,” explained Karapetyan.
“Azerbaijan collected the mines it is complaining about from the sovereign territory of Armenia, which was occupied by the Azerbaijani armed forces in 2021-2022. Therefore, Azerbaijan is trying to create a false evidence base based on the mines it collected after its illegal acts of aggression to justify its claim. This claim is groundless. I hope that the Court will not allow Azerbaijan to abuse the court proceedings by trying to take advantage of the consequences of its own illegal actions,” Kirakosyan added.
He said, Azerbaijan’s demand is another obvious attempt to divert attention from its misdeeds. Kirakosyan emphasized that Azerbaijan submitted its claim only six days after Armenia’s claim against Azerbaijan, “despite the fact that most of its alleged evidence has been in its possession for months.”