By Akbar Mammadov
Nagorno-Karabakh’s Azerbaijani community has said that Armenia's occupation of seven surrounding regions, including Gubadli, outside of Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh region shows that the conflict stems from Armenia's intention to annex Azerbaijani territories by force.
The community made the remarks on August 31 that marks the 27h anniversary of the occupation of Gubadli by Armenian armed forces.
The community reminded that 238 Gubadli residents were killed, 316 were become to be disabled persons and more than 100 people were missing as a result of the occupation, adding that the administrative centre and 93 villages of the region were completely destroyed and looted, over 40,000 Gubadli residents became internally displaced persons.
“As a result of the occupation of Gubadli, 445,000 square meters of housing stock, 4 medical centres, 6 kindergartens, 61 general education schools, 10 culture houses, 24 clubs, 1 local history museum, 60 libraries were destroyed, the occupiers destroyed 94 villages and settlements, 205 cultural facilities, burned and looted 12 historical monuments,” the statement reads.
The community pointed out that 9 in each of Ashagi Mollu and Hamzali villages, 5 in Aliguluushagi village, 1 ancient cave of the 4th century in the area called “Gavur valley”, “Goy gala” (Blue Fortress-red.) fortress built in the 5th century, “Galali” fortress in Muradkhanli, all historical monuments in Khojamsakhli village in Gubadli have remained under the occupation of the adversary.
The statement reads that the recent intensification of Armenia's policy of illegal settlement in the occupied Azerbaijani lands, including Gubadli, shows that Armenia has not given up its intention to strengthen the consequences of the occupation and is not interested in a peaceful solution to the conflict.
“We declare that the settlement of the conflict is possible only after the withdrawal of the Armenian Armed Forces from all occupied Azerbaijani territories and the return of Azerbaijanis to their native lands who have been subjected to ethnic cleansing. Like all internally displaced persons, the people of Gubadli will return to their native lands."
Azerbaijan and Armenia are locked in a conflict over Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh breakaway region, which along with seven adjacent regions was occupied by Armenian forces in a war in the early 1990s. More than 20,000 Azerbaijanis were killed and around one million were displaced as a result of the large-scale hostilities.
The OSCE Minsk Group co-chaired by the United States, Russia and France has been mediating the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict since the signing of the volatile cease-fire agreement in 1994. The Minsk Group’s efforts have resulted in no progress and to this date, Armenia has failed to abide by the UN Security Council resolutions (822, 853, 874 and 884) that demand the withdrawal of Armenian military forces from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.
Akbar Mammadov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AkbarMammadov97
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