Accredited diplomats representing 19 foreign countries on Friday visited Kornidzor in Armenia’s Syunik Province where a humanitarian convoy carrying emergency food and medical aid to Artsakh remains blocked by Azerbaijan at the entrance of the Lachin Corridor.
The foreign representatives were able to see first hand how the delivery of 400 tons of humanitarian assistance from Armenia is being barred from entry into Azerbaijan.
It was announced that the trucks, which arrived there on Wednesday, would remain at the mouth of the Lachin Corridor by the Hakari Bridge, where Azerbaijan has set up an illegal checkpoint.
The foreign diplomats and members of international organizations represented the United States, Belarus, Bulgaria, Spain, Italy, Iran, Iraq, Poland, Lithuania, India, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Ukraine, France, United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross.
While in Syunik the foreign representatives met with citizens of Artsakh who have been stranded in Armenia since the Azerbaijani blockade began in December, 2022.
Deputy Foreign Minister Vahan Kostanyan and the Syunik Governor Robert Ghukasyan accompanied the foreign representatives as they toured the area and later held a closed-door meeting with the Artsakh citizens.
“As you can see the trucks carrying humanitarian cargo have been stranded here for a while now,” Ghukasyan told the foreign representatives “The vehicles have stopped here and it is impossible to transport the humanitarian cargo to the other side of the border,” Ghukasyan said, pointing to the convoy of trucks that cleared the Armenian checkpoint at Kornidzor on Wednesday.
The governor pointed out that the Azerbaijani authorities are attempting to advance the notion of “reintegration” when people, including children in Nagorno-Karabakh are starving.
“Do they intend to reach that integration by way of starvation to death? This is unacceptable for us all. This humanitarian cargo must reach the people who are impatiently waiting for it, who are hungry. Otherwise we would all silently witness the situation get worse with every second,” Ghukasyan told the diplomats.
“I probably cannot imagine the difficult situation you are in. I wish I had some good news to share with you. But unfortunately, we know what you know. At this moment, I want to ask: if you have any clear message, a message that you want us to take to our embassies, to the capitals of our country, send them,” Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy to Armenia John Allelo said after meeting with Artsakh citizens.
The only message from the people of Artsakh was “open the road of life.”