Armenia has aggressive military doctrine, continues to pursue militaristic policy
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that if the Armenian FM and his deputy want peace through deeds, rather than words, then the Armenian troops must be withdrawn from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.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.