By Abdul Kerimkhanov
The ruling of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on “Saribekyan and Balayan vs Azerbaijan” case of 30 January 2020 is not a final decision and the Azerbaijani side has the right to bring the case to the Grand Chamber within three months, Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry’s spokesperson Leyla Abdullayeva has said.
The ECHR’s ruling is about the case of Armenian Manvel Saribekyan who was detained in Azerbaijan on espionage and terror charges in October 2010 and committed suicide while in custody.
Abdullayeva reminded that the Armenian citizen Manvel Saribekyan was detained on 11 September 2010, with several espionage equipment, while a group of Armenian saboteurs were prevented on the north-west direction of the line of contact of the armed forces of Armenia and Azerbaijan.
"On October 5, he committed suicide, and a criminal case was launched at the Baku Military Prosecutor's Office," Abdullayeva noted.
Furthermore, Abdullayeva said that the statement of the Armenian Foreign Ministry with regards to the case “runs counter to the joint statements calling for the preparation of populations of both countries for peace, adopted by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Armenia as well, and it reveals the true intentions of the leadership of Armenia.”
Abdullayeva reminded that the ECHR ruling of “Chiragov and others vs Armenia” of 16 June 2015 affirmed the responsibility of Armenia for aggression against Azerbaijan and it was confirmed that the illegal regime in Azerbaijani territories occupied by Armenia “survives by virtue of the military, political, financial and other support given to it by Armenia”.
Note that the “Chiragov and Others v. Armenia” case has been under consideration in the ECHR since April 2005 on the basis of the suit of Azerbaijani IDPs who cannot return to their homes in Azerbaijan’s Lachin region that they were forced to flee in 1992 as a result of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
In accordance with the court’s judgment on the case, Armenia is responsible for aggression against Azerbaijan, the occupation of its lands, the military presence in these territories, the expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijani citizens and for depriving them of the opportunity to use their property.
Abdullayeva further pointed out the fact that Armenia has occupied Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding seven regions, perpetrated ethnic cleansing against the Azerbaijanis residing in these territories and forced hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis from their homes.
She reminded that the Armenian policy of ethnic cleansing against Azerbaijanis living in the territory of present-day Armenia was aggravated in the late 1980s and reached its culmination by violent deportation of Azerbaijanis from Armenia’s Gafan region in 1988-89.
"The cruelty of the armed forces of Armenia targeting the civilian population during the aggression and the brutally killing of 613 Azerbaijani civilians only in one night on February 26, 1992 in Khojaly town is firmly condemned by the international community and recognized as genocide," Abdullayeva emphasized.
As a result of the Armenian aggression, she added, 3,889 Azerbaijanis went missing and hundreds of people held in Armenian captivity died as a result of severe tortures.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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