The Commissioner for Human Rights (Ombudsman) of the Republic of Azerbaijan Sabina Aliyeva has issued a statement on the loss of life and destructions caused by the shelling of Ganja city and other territories of Azerbaijan by the Armenian armed forces.

The statement reads:

“The international community is aware, that starting from September 27, 2020, the Armenian armed forces have again violated the ceasefire regime and norms of the international law, intensively firing on civilian settlements and social objects using heavy artillery, aircraft and special missile systems.

On October 4, 2020, Armenian armed forces continue their criminal activities, fired heavy artillery at the second largest city of Azerbaijan, Ganja, which has an ancient history, numerous cultural facilities, a tourist center and a densely populated city, and is in fact located outside the conflict zone.

The Armenian armed forces targeted and deliberately fired with heavy artillery and missiles at Beylagan and Terter cities, Horadiz city in Fizuli district, Barda, Agdam, Agjabadi, Jabrayil, as well as other settlements densely populated by civilians.

As a result, many civilians were killed and injured, and homes of civil habitants, historical and cultural monuments, administrative buildings and other social facilities were severely damaged.

Whereas, international humanitarian law requires, as a basic principle, a clear distinction between combatants and civil population, civilian objects and military objectives in the course of military operations.

The occupant state of Armenia, which targets the civilian population using special missile systems, grossly violates the UN Charter, norms and principles of international law, norms of international humanitarian law and the Geneva Conventions, particularly, the provisions of Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War (Fourth Geneva Convention) dated August 12, 1949, Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, dated May 14, 1954, as well as the provisions of other human rights instruments. It continues its aggressive policy and war crimes.

Failure of the influential international organizations to carry out serious measures to prevent war crimes committed by the occupant Armenia further make the aggressor state more unbridled, it deliberately expands the conflict zone and continues to commit new crimes against humanity.

We urgently call on the world community to demand from the occupying Armenian state, which continues to commit war crimes carried out deliberately in blatant violation of international humanitarian law and resulted in the killing of civilians, to put an end to the occupation by refraining from criminal acts that endanger the life and health and property of the civilian population and thus from mass violation of human rights and freedoms, and to take decisive steps in order to establish international legal responsibility.”