Politics 14:00 01/12/2020 Armenia

Armenian ombudsman: Impunity for Azerbaijan’s war crimes will clear the way for more violence

The Office of the Human Rights Defender (Ombudsman) of Armenia has completed the next stage of study and legal wording of evidence of the atrocities committed by the Azerbaijani troops against Armenian prisoners of war, including servicemen and civilians, during the war, Ombudsman Arman Tatoyan said in a Facebook post late on Monday.

“Torture and cruelty committed by the Azerbaijani armed forces, inhuman treatment are widespread, with obvious elements of war crimes motivated by ethnic hatred,” he said.

The ombudsman called for urgent efforts to hold Azerbaijan to account for its extremely serious war crimes.

Tatoyan stressed the Armenian government should convey important messages to the international community and the Azerbaijani authorities.

“The Azerbaijani authorities must understand that they will not go unpunished for the most blatant human rights violations, war crimes, systematic propaganda of Armenophobia and genocidal policies. It is necessary to show that all efforts are being made in our country for that purpose.

“Impunity will pave the way for more violence and torture.

"We must not let that happen. Every single day and hour are precious," Tatoyaan said.

The ombudsman highlighted the role of Armenia’s executive authorities and government structures and their coordinated efforts to ensure the protection of the rights of Armenian POWs held in Azerbaijan.

“Instead, the government of Armenia hosted a discussion on 30 November dedicated to the investigation of criminal proceedings on other topics and the issues of criminal prosecution, arrest or release of specific persons.

“I consider unacceptable especially the participation of a number of judges and several members of the Supreme Judicial Council in that discussion. Discussions in such direction endanger the independence and authority of the judiciary.

“The courts are called upon to ensure the safeguarding of a person's liberty, a fair trial and the protection of other rights. They can solve this problem effectively only if the guarantees of external and internal independence are fully operational and the appearance of that independence is fully ensured,” he wrote.

Also, Tatoyan said that his office has been closely cooperating with human rights activists Artak Zeynalyan and Siranush Sahakyan, as well as Artsakh Ombudsman Artak Beglaryan, Representative of Armenia before the ECHR Yeghishe Kirakosyan, the Investigative Committee, the National Security Service and the Prosecutor General's Office of Armenia to fix the Azerbaijani military's atrocities and to protect the Armenian POWs’ rights.



Source Panorama.am
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