By Rashid Shirinov
Representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) may meet on January 23 with two Azerbaijanis, Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev , who were taken hostage by Armenian militaries in the occupied Azerbaijani territory.
“As I know, the representatives of the International Red Cross Committee will visit the hostages today, and hand our message to them,” Sahib Musayev, the brother of Dilgam Asgarov, told Azvision.
Spokesperson for the ICRC Baku mission Ilaha Huseynova said that if the meeting takes place, the public will be provided with the information.
The two citizens of Azerbaijan were detained by the Armenian armed forces in July 2014 while visiting their native places and graves of loved ones in the occupied Azerbaijani Kalbajar region. Moreover, Armenian forces killed the third Azerbaijani citizen Hasan Hasanov.
Later, Guliyev and Asgarov were judged illegally by the unrecognized courts of a separatist regime in occupied Nagorno-Karabakh. Following an expedited “judicial process” in December 2015, Asgarov was sentenced to life imprisonment and Guliyev to 22 years. Attempts of Azerbaijan to provide justice and to free its citizens are still unsuccessful.
Azerbaijan’s State Committee on Affairs of Refugees and IDPs, the State Commission on Prisoners of War, Hostages and Missing Persons and other agencies have repeatedly urged international organizations, including the ICRC, to assist in release of Guliyev and Asgarov, whilst the problem remains topical yet.
Azerbaijan, whose over 4,000 citizens were taken captive, hostage, or went missing as a result of the Nagorno-Karabakh war, has repeatedly declared its readiness to begin negotiations with Armenia to free the captives and resolve the long-standing Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
However, the Armenian side keeps ignoring all attempts of Azerbaijan and international organizations, thereby disrespecting the international law and hindering the settlement of the conflict.
Rashid Shirinov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @RashidShirinov
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