Aus­tralian Se­nate once again sup­ported Azer­bai­jan’s ter­ri­to­rial in­tegrity

Azer News - - Karabakh Conflict - By Rashid Shiri­nov

The For­eign Af­fairs, De­fense and Trade Com­mit­tee of the Aus­tralian Se­nate has held a hear­ing on for­eign and de­fense pol­icy of the coun­try, the Se­nate said in a state­ment on June 6. A num­ber of is­sues were dis­cussed dur­ing the hear­ings, in­clud­ing Aus­tralia’s po­si­tion on the Ar­me­nia-Azer­bai­jan Nagorno-Karabakh con­flict.

Dur­ing the hear­ing, Sen­a­tor Lee Rhi­an­non asked a mem­ber of the Greens party a ques­tion about the con­flict. Re­fer­ring to the state­ment of Con­cetta Fier­ra­vanti-Wells, Min­is­ter for In­ter­na­tional Devel­op­ment and the Pa­cific, say­ing that “Aus­tralia strongly sup­ports the sovereignty and ter­ri­to­rial in­tegrity of Azer­bai­jan, in­clud­ing Azer­bai­jan’s po­si­tion on Nagorno-Karabakh con­flict,” Rhi­an­non asked if it com­plies with the fun­da­men­tal prin­ci­ples of the OSCE Minsk process.

An­swer­ing the ques­tion, Cather­ine Raper, Head of the Europe and Latin Amer­ica Di­vi­sion at the De­part­ment of For­eign Af­fairs and Trade of Aus­tralia, once again con­firmed that sup­port for the ter­ri­to­rial in­tegrity of Azer­bai­jan as well as the non-recog­ni­tion of NagornoKarabakh as an in­de­pen­dent state are the long-term pol­icy of the Aus­tralian gov­ern­ment. She also noted that Can­berra sup­ports the ac­tiv­ity of the OSCE Minsk Group.

The state­ment of the Aus­tralian Se­nate on the is­sue led to se­ri­ous dis­con­tent of the Ar­me­nian Na­tional Com­mit­tee of Aus­tralia.

Azer­bai­jan and Ar­me­nia fought a lengthy war that ended with sign­ing of a frag­ile cease­fire in 1994. Since the war, Ar­me­nian armed forces have oc­cu­pied 20 per­cent of Azer­bai­jan's ter­ri­tory, in­clud­ing Nagorno-Karabakh and seven sur­round­ing re­gions. More than 20,000 Azer­bai­ja­nis were killed and over 1 mil­lion were dis­placed as a re­sult of the large-scale hos­til­i­ties.

While the OSCE Minsk Group acted as the only me­di­a­tor in res­o­lu­tion of the con­flict, the oc­cu­pa­tion of the ter­ri­tory of the sov­er­eign state with its in­ter­na­tion­ally rec­og­nized bound­aries has been left out of due at­ten­tion of the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity for years.

Un­til now, Ar­me­nia ig­nores four UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil res­o­lu­tions on im­me­di­ate withdrawal from the oc­cu­pied ter­ri­tory of Azer­bai­jan, thus keep­ing ten­sion high in the re­gion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Azerbaijan

© PressReader. All rights reserved.