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Azerbaijanis picket BBC office over journalists' killing in Armenian mine blast

17 June 2021 15:00 (UTC+04:00)
Azerbaijanis picket BBC office over journalists' killing in Armenian mine blast

By Vafa Ismayilova

Azerbaijanis living in the UK have staged a picket outside the head office of BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) to draw attention to the killing of two local journalists in a mine blast in liberated Kalbajar region on June 4, local news sources reported on June 16.

The protesters addressed an appeal to international agencies and urged the international community and the global media not to be indifferent to Armenia’s subversive acts and the killing of Azerbaijani journalists while on duty, the report added.

The protesters, who joined the action with Azerbaijan’s state flag, demonstrated photos of slain Azertag (AZERTAC) correspondent Maharram Ibrahimov and state TV channel AzTV cameraman Siraj Abishov.

They held posters depicting Armenia’s mine crimes. The posters featured slogans such as "Give mine maps", "Armenia's war crimes against Azerbaijani journalists", "Armenia does not observe laws", "Armenia is the killer of Azerbaijani journalists" and "Save us from mines".

The address was handed over to the BBC management. During the picket, local residents were informed in detail about war crimes and provocations that Armenia had committed against the Azerbaijani people.

The action was held with the support of the State Committee for Work with the Diaspora and jointly organized by the Natavan Group and the Association of British Azerbaijanis.

Over 140 Azerbaijan citizens have been killed or injured in mine explosions since November 10, 2020.

Armenia deliberately and constantly planted mines on Azerbaijani territories, in violation of the 1949 Geneva Convention, thereby being a major threat to regional peace, security and cooperation.

Until the June 12 agreement to hand over 15 Armenian detainees to Armenia in exchange for mine maps for Aghdam, Yerevan refused to provide maps of hundreds of thousands of mines it had planted on the Azerbaijani territories over three decades of occupation.

Azerbaijan's Mine Action Agency defused 7,449 antipersonnel mines, 3,643 anti-tank mines, and 9,033 unexploded munitions from November 10, 2020, to May 31, 2021. In this period, the agency cleared 2,763.5 hectares of mines and unexploded ordnance.

Azerbaijan has made numerous appeals to international organizations and lodged an intergovernmental complaint to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) over Armenia's refusal to provide maps of mines in the formerly occupied territories.

The war between Armenia and Azerbaijan ended on November 10 with the signing of a trilateral peace deal by the Azerbaijani, Russian and Armenian leaders.

The peace agreement stipulated the return of Azerbaijan's Armenian-occupied Kalbajar, Aghdam and Lachin regions. Before the signing of the deal, the Azerbaijani army had liberated around 300 villages, settlements, city centres and historic Shusha city. The Azerbaijani army declared a victory against the Armenian troops. The signed agreement obliged Armenia to withdraw its troops from the Azerbaijani lands that it has occupied since the early 1990s.


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