Ar­me­nia has ag­gres­sive mil­i­tary doc­trine, con­tin­ues to pur­sue mil­i­taris­tic pol­icy

Azer News - - Karabakh Conflict - By Rashid Shiri­nov

Ar­me­nia has an ag­gres­sive mil­i­tary doc­trine and con­tin­ues to pur­sue a mil­i­taris­tic pol­icy, said Spokesman for the Azer­bai­jani For­eign Min­istry Hik­mat Ha­jiyev.

He was com­ment­ing on the state­ments made by the Ar­me­nian for­eign min­is­ter in Ger­many and deputy for­eign min­is­ter at the OSCE con­fer­ence on se­cu­rity is­sues.

“Azer­bai­jan, as a coun­try sub­jected to ag­gres­sion and oc­cu­pa­tion by Ar­me­nia, is the most in­ter­ested party in the early set­tle­ment of the Ar­me­nia-Azer­bai­jan Nagorno-Karabakh con­flict through ne­go­ti­a­tions and in en­sur­ing the re­turn of Azer­bai­jani in­ter­nally dis­placed per­sons, who have been sub­jected to eth­nic cleans­ing, to their na­tive lands,” Ha­jiyev told Trend on July 1.

But the Azer­bai­jani peo­ple and the state will never agree the lands to re­main un­der oc­cu­pa­tion, he added.

“The il­le­gal pres­ence of the Ar­me­nian armed forces in the oc­cu­pied ter­ri­to­ries of Azer­bai­jan and the con­tin­u­ing ag­gres­sion of Ar­me­nia against Azer­bai­jan with the use of force re­main the main threat to peace and se­cu­rity in the re­gion,” Ha­jiyev said.

He added that Ar­me­nia has an ag­gres­sive mil­i­tary doc­trine and con­tin­ues to pur­sue a mil­i­taris­tic pol­icy: “Ac­cord­ing to the Global Mil­i­ta­riza­tion In­dex of the Bonn In­ter­na­tional Cen­ter for Con­ver­sion, Ar­me­nia ranks first in Europe and third in the world in terms of mil­i­ta­riza­tion.”

The spokesman also men­tioned that the mil­i­tary ex­pen­di­tures of Ar­me­nia make up 4.1 per­cent of its per capita in­come.

“For com­par­i­son, this fig­ure is 3.6 per­cent in Azer­bai­jan. The funds that Ar­me­nia spends on mil­i­ta­riza­tion and the arms race could be used to solve the se­ri­ous so­cial and eco­nomic prob­lems that the coun­try faces,” Ha­jiyev added.

He noted that if the Ar­me­nian FM and his deputy want peace through deeds, rather than words, then the Ar­me­nian troops must be with­drawn from the oc­cu­pied ter­ri­to­ries of Azer­bai­jan.

“The sooner this is done, the faster peace can be achieved in the re­gion. Thus, the Ar­me­nian side must make a choice and let us see which path they choose,” Ha­jiyev said.

He stressed that Azer­bai­jan in­creases and will in­crease its de­fense ca­pa­bil­i­ties to en­sure the pro­tec­tion of its ter­ri­to­ries and the safety of cit­i­zens.

The Nagorno-Karabakh con­flict be­gan in 1988 when Ar­me­nia made ter­ri­to­rial claims against Azer­bai­jan. As a re­sult of the en­su­ing war, in 1992 Ar­me­nian armed forces oc­cu­pied 20 per­cent of Azer­bai­jan, in­clud­ing the Nagorno-Karabakh re­gion 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. The 1994 cease­fire agree­ment was fol­lowed by peace ne­go­ti­a­tions.

Un­til now, Ar­me­nia con­trols fifth part of Azer­bai­jan’s ter­ri­tory and re­jects im­ple­ment­ing four UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil res­o­lu­tions on with­drawal of its armed forces from NagornoKarabakh and sur­round­ing re­gions.

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