The Occupation in Figures
Nagorno-Karabakh: 1988-1992, territory 4400 km2; Shusha: may 08, 1992, territory 289 km2; Lachin: may 18, 1992, territory 1840 km2; Kalbajar: april 2, 1993, territory 3054 km2; Aghdam: july 23, 1993, territory 1150 km2; Fizuli: august 23, 1993, territory 1390 km2; Jabrayil: august 23, 1993, territory 1050 km2; Gubadli: august 31, 1993, territory 802 km2; Zangilan: october 29, 1993, territory 707 km2.

President Aliyev: Only reason why Karabakh conflict not yet resolved is that Armenia doesn't want to free occupied territories

President Aliyev: Only reason why Karabakh conflict not yet resolved is that Armenia doesn't want to free occupied territories



The only reason why the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is not yet resolved is that Armenia doesn't want to free occupied territories, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev said.

He made the remarks at the opening of the VI Global Baku Forum titled "Bridging Gaps to Create Inclusive Societies".

President Aliyev said Azerbaijan unfortunately suffered from aggression and occupation of the neighboring Armenia, which occupied almost 20 percent of Azerbaijani territories, brutally violates the international law norms, committed ethnic cleansing policy against Azerbaijanis, as a result of which over 1 million of Azerbaijanis became refugees and IDPs.

Ilham Aliyev also reminded that Armenia committed a war crime - the genocide in Khojaly, which today is recognized by more than 10 countries. He went on to say that as a result of the Khojaly massacre, 613 innocent people, including 106 women and 63 children, were killed. Moreover, more than 1,000 are still missing.

"This is a crime against humanity, and this was part of the aggression policy against Azerbaijan, said President Aliyev.

"Nagorno-Karabakh is our ancient land, and for centuries Azerbaijanis lived on those territories. Now, everything is destroyed on our occupied lands - historical buildings, monuments, graves, etc. And this is reflected in the OSCE's two assessment missions sent to the occupied territories. This is also a genocide against our cultural heritage," he said.

The president went on to add that the conflict resolution should be based on laws and principles of international law. He also reminded about the UN Security Council resolutions adopted in the early 1990s, which demand immediate and unconditional withdrawal of Armenian troops from our territories.

"Unfortunately, these resolutions are not implemented, and no sanctions were imposed on Armenia - the country which violates the UN Security Council resolutions for more than 20 years. Other international organizations, like the OSCE, the Islamic Cooperation Organization, the European Parliament, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, the Non-Alignment Movement, adopted similar resolutions," Ilham Aliyev said.

"Historical truth, international law is on our side. The only reason why the conflict is not yet resolved is because Armenia doesn't want to free the occupied territories. Not just Nagorno-Karabakh, but also seven surrounding districts of Azerbaijan, which are under occupation as well," he said.

He went on to say that the status quo is unacceptable, it is not sustainable.

"This is not our position, this is the position of the leading world countries, particularly those, who have mandate from the OSCE to be mediators of the conflict - the US, Russia, France. The presidents of these countries, have, on many occasions, openly stated that the status quo is unacceptable and it has to be changed. The status quo must be changed, Armenia must start the immediate withdrawal of its troops from the occupied territories and allow Azerbaijani people to return to their homeland," Ilham Aliyev said.

The president said that this conflict is not only the biggest injustice in modern history, it is also a source of permanent threat and instability in the not very stable region.

"Therefore, the soonest resolution of the conflict based on principles of international law, the UN Security Council resolutions, the Helsinki Final Act, must be achieved and then peace will come to our region," said Azerbaijan's president.