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Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry pardons Austrian journalist

1 December 2016 17:18 (UTC+04:00)
Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry pardons Austrian journalist

By Rashid Shirinov

An Austrian journalist, who had illegally visited the Azerbaijani territories occupied by Armenia, appealed to the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry requesting not to include him into the list of “persona non-grata”.

Thomas Seifert, a journalist of Austrian newspaper Wiener Zeitung, in his letter expressed respect for the territorial integrity, sovereignty of Azerbaijan and inviolability of internationally recognized borders. He also noted that he had made a visit to the occupied territories not being informed about the illegality of his trip.

The Ministry decided not to include the journalist’s name to the list of undesirable persons, given his appeal and the fact that he is a representative of the media.

Unauthorized visits to Nagorno-Karabakh and other regions of Azerbaijan occupied by Armenia are considered illegal, and any individuals paying such visits are included in the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry's "black list".

Baku has repeatedly warned foreign officials and diplomats of unauthorized visits to its territories that are occupied by Armenia, calling them contradictory to international law.

Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry and diplomatic missions pay special attention to the illegal activity in the occupied areas of Azerbaijan. The work is constantly carried out to prevent such illegal actions.

Azerbaijan and Armenia for over two decades have been locked in conflict, which emerged over Armenian territorial claims. Since the 1990s war, Armenian armed forces have occupied over 20 percent of Azerbaijan's internationally recognized territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions. The UN Security Council has adopted four resolutions on Armenian withdrawal, but they have not been enforced to this day.

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Rashid Shirinov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @RashidShirinov

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