By Sara Rajabova
Azerbaijan's deputy permanent representative to the UN Tofig Musayev has slammed the Armenian foreign minister's statement made at the General Debate of the 68th session of the UN General Assembly, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry told Trend news agency.
Musayev said Armenia opposes the facts which point to its policy of aggression, hostility and hatred, outright lies and falsification.
"According to the Armenian foreign minister, his government welcomed the joint statement on the conflict settlement made on June 18, 2013 by the presidents of the three co-chair countries of the OSCE Minsk Group. However, mere welcoming of declaratory statements is not sufficient for reaching progress in the conflict settlement process, especially when the commitments and deeds of Armenia have always been at variance," Musayev said.
Musayev said that according to Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandyan, Azerbaijan "keeps misinterpreting the 1993 Security Council resolutions". Such logic is easily dismissed by numerous facts and documents, which testify to Armenia's non-compliance with the requirements of the Security Council resolutions and to its determined efforts to undermine the process of settling the conflict on the basis of international law, Musayev said.
The diplomat said that by claiming that Azerbaijan is rejecting the implementation of confidence-building measures, the Armenian side "again demonstrates its usual forgetfulness".
"Otherwise, the officials of that country would recall that Armenia deliberately denies the right of more than 1 million Azerbaijani refugees and internally displaced persons to return to their homes, and undertakes efforts to alter the demographic situation in the occupied territories and remove any signs of their Azerbaijani cultural and historical roots," he said.
According to Musayev, besides, in an apparent disregard of its obligations under international law, as well as of its commitments under the existing arms control regime, Armenia continues building up its military presence in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.
Moreover, a comparative analysis shows that in correlation to its population, territory, annual budget and gross domestic product, Armenia is the most militarized country in the South Caucasus, Musayev said.
"In reality, by disregarding the resolutions of the Security Council, by challenging the OSCE-led peace efforts, by continuing to illegally occupy the territories of Azerbaijan, by deliberately denying the right of 1 million Azerbaijani refugees and internally displaced persons to return to their homes, by misinterpreting the norms and principles of international law, Armenia clearly demonstrates that it endangers regional and international peace and security," Musayev said.
Armenia occupied over 20 percent of Azerbaijan's internationally recognized territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions, after laying territorial claims against its South Caucasus neighbor that caused a brutal war in the early 1990s. Long-standing efforts by US, Russian and French mediators have been largely fruitless so far.
As a result of the military aggression of Armenia, over 20,000 Azerbaijanis were killed, 4,866 are reported missing and almost 100,000 were injured, and 50,000 were disabled.
The UN Security Council has passed four resolutions on Armenian withdrawal from the Azerbaijani territory, but they have not been enforced to this day.