Armenia destroys peace platform, arrests activists
By Rashid Shirinov
It is no secret that the Armenian government is not ready for constructive negotiations about the main problem of the region В'” the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Armenian authorities, keeping under occupation 20 percent of Azerbaijan’s territory, suffocates any initiative directed moving the processВ out of stagnation.В
This time the government has launched a campaign against those seeking a civil dialogue with Azerbaijan, which has been subjected to aggression for over two decades.В They are threatened with cruel punishment should continue their peace initiatives.
In early November, some Armenian human rights activists visited Baku to participate in a peacekeeping conference. Right after that, these people became persecuted in their homeland Armenia.
In an interview with 1in.am newspaper Armenian political scientist Gagik Gmbaryan called to neutralizeВ the people, who attented the Armenian-Azerbaijani peacekeeping platform.В
”The activities of our [Armenian] National Security Service should be aimed at neutralization of all these people by all possible means. I’m not saying they should be physically destroyed, but if it comes to that, this should also be done,” he said.
The Armenian newspaper Ayonts Ashkhar and others also called for the punishment of the ”traitors” and openly encouraged to murder the Armenians who joinedВ the conference in Baku.
Such threats are often heard in todayв’s Armenia. Just a week ago, Vahe Avetyan, Armenian human rights activist who also visited Baku for the conference, wrote on his Facebook account about these threats in his address.
”I ask you to raise the issue at the international level. This happens not for the first time. Over the past ten years, such appeals and massive attacks have happened to the writers in exile and Armenian peacemakers,” Avetyan wrote.
After the threatening statement of Gmbaryan, Avetyan again appealed to the society, where he called on all human rights defenders and journalists to address all international organizations because the Armenian media openly call for killing the members of the Baku platform.
”The appearance of people with peace initiatives and any attempt of reconciliation with Azerbaijan is death for the Karabakh clan, which now rules Armenia. It is the collapse of their ideology of war and hostility with their neighbors,” Elkhan Alasgarov, head of the Baku Network’s expert council said, commenting on the issue.
Recently, the young writer and civic activist Lusine Nersisyan from the occupied Nagorno-Karabakhв’s Khankendi city was arrested by Armenian security forces because of the same reason В'” visiting Azerbaijan for peacekeeping discussions.
This issue received quite enough publicity by the international society. However, this incident should be put on the agenda of all human rights organizations. The Azerbaijani experts also wait the OSCE Minsk Group to comment on Nersisyanв’s arrest and prosecution of other visitors from Armenia.
”The silence of countries and international organizations who make statements on every occasion, promotes not peace but war,” Elkhan Alasgarov said.
By and large, it is obvious that the Armenian authorities followВ the terrorist methods to get rid of thoseВ Armenians who do not support the policy of their government in the Karabakh issue. Most of the Armenian society long ago understood that the constant feud towards AzerbaijanВ is pointless, whilst the Armenian government still reject this reality.