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Azerbaijani archaeologists appeal to prosecutor general due to illegal Armenian excavations

17 November 2020 17:15 (UTC+04:00)
Azerbaijani archaeologists appeal to prosecutor general due to illegal Armenian excavations

By Trend

Employees of the Institute of Archeology and Ethnography under Azerbaijani National Academy of Sciences appealed to the Prosecutor General Kamran Aliyev due to the plundering of Azerbaijan’s material-cultural monuments by the Armenian archaeologists and illegal excavations carried out by them for a long time in the occupied territories, Trend reports citing the institute.

According to the appeal, since 2002, Armenia, with the involvement of foreign scientists, carried out Illegal archaeological excavations in the Azykh Cave, dating back to the Paleolithic era, located in the territory of Azerbaijan’s Khojavend district, already liberated from occupation, and illegally exported the discovered artifacts to Armenia.

It’s also reported that a group of employees of the Institute of Archeology and Ethnography of the Armenian Academy of Sciences has been conducting archaeological researches near the Shahbulag fortress in the partly occupied Aghdam district since 2005, and since 2006, the same group, led by Hamlet Petrosyan, head of the Faculty of Cultural Studies at Yerevan State University, began illegal archaeological excavations, which lasted continuously for 14 years - until July 2020.

The appeal notes that the Armenians and their colleagues from other countries, carrying out the illegal excavations in the territories of Azerbaijan, thereby violated the provisions of the Law of Azerbaijan ‘On the Protection of Historical and Cultural Monuments’ dated April 10, 1998, the protocol of the Hague Convention of 1954 ‘On the Protection cultural property during armed conflicts’ from 1999 (Armenia is a member of this protocol), requirements of the European Convention from 1992 ‘On the protection of archaeological heritage’.

Carrying out illegal archaeological work on the site of the ancient city in Azerbaijan, the Armenians constantly appeared in the world press with fabrications about the discoveries in the so-called ‘city of Tigranakert’. In 2009, they created the so-called ‘Tigranakert reserve’, and in 2010 in the Shahbulag fortress of the times of the Karabakh khanate - the so-called ‘Tigranakert Archaeological Museum’.

In their appeal, the Azerbaijani scientists stressed the importance of initiating a criminal case against the Armenian and other archaeologists and the return of all artifacts illegally exported from Azerbaijan.

Following over a month of military action to liberate its territories from Armenian occupation, Azerbaijan has pushed Armenia to sign the surrender document. A joint statement on the matter was made by the Azerbaijani president, Armenia's PM, and the president of Russia.

A complete ceasefire and a cessation of all hostilities in the zone of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict were introduced at 00:00 hours (Moscow time) on 10 November 2020.

Armenian Armed Forces launched a large-scale military attack on positions of the Azerbaijani army on the front line, using large-caliber weapons, mortars, and artillery on Sept. 27. Azerbaijan responded with a counter-offensive along the entire front.

Back in July 2020, the Armenian Armed Forces violated the ceasefire in the direction of Azerbaijan's Tovuz district. As a result of Azerbaijan's retaliation, the opposing forces were silenced. The fighting continued the following days as well. Azerbaijan lost a number of military personnel members, who died fighting off the attacks of the Armenian Armed Forces.

The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, the Armenian Armed Forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts. The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations.


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