Illegal excavations in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan are an open violation of international laws and agreements.

Since the 1990s, Armenians have been conducting intensive excavations in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan, including in the Agdam region. What is the reason for such a long-playing activity of Armenian geologists? The fact is that the state propaganda of Armenia in the person of Armenian historians claims that there was an ancient city of the notorious “Great Armenia” called Tigranakert on the territory of Agdam. The only task of these excavations carried by Armenians is an attempt to justify the occupation of Azerbaijani territories.

“Armenia is trying to prove the legitimacy of its presence in these territories, the antiquity of the presence of Armenian culture in Nagorno-Karabakh and no Turkic cultural presence.

“Therefore, they are trying to conduct these excavations for political purposes, to find some artifacts that could be interpreted as Armenian, ” Russian expert and political scientist, general director of the Institute of Political Studies Sergey Markov told Report.

Sergey Markov

Russian expert and political scientist, general director of the Institute of Political Studies Sergey Markov

“The manipulation of history for political purposes leads to falsification of history and to a distortion of the understanding of world culture.”

“Unfortunately, the problem is that since this all happens for political purposes, there is a threat of the termination of the Azerbaijani cultural heritage in the occupied territories.

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If they find cultural artifacts that speak of the Azerbaijani presence in Nagorno-Karabakh, these artifacts can be destroyed. It is well known that the cultural artifacts of the Irevan Khanate, testifying to the presence of Azerbaijanis in the territory of present-day Yerevan, in the center of modern Armenia, were to a large extent either altered or destroyed. This manipulation of history for political purposes leads to falsification of history and to a distortion of understanding of world culture. This is very dangerous,” Markov said.

At the same time, the occupiers carry the excavations illegally, in violation of all international law, and, in fact, are the manifestations of vandalism.

“The fact of the occupation by the Armenian side was recognized at the level of 4 resolutions of the UN Security Council of 1993 and other documents of other international and regional organizations,” Honored Lawyer of Kyrgyzstan, Doctor of Law, Professor Kairat Osmonaliev told Report.

“The regime and legal norms of military occupation are determined by special international agreements adopted at the 4th Hague Conference of 1907, as well as by the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and their protocols of 1977.

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According to these international legal acts, occupant must respect human rights, exclude deportations and mass executions of the population, while private property, property of communities, religious, educational, scientific and other non-governmental organizations should be inviolable. Therefore, the destruction of mosques, the appropriation of their property is a violation of the norms of these international legal sources.”

Leyla Abdullayeva

Spokesperson of Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry Leyla Abdullayeva

“Armenia, contrary to international legal obligations, pursues a policy of barbaric plunder and destruction of material and cultural values and cultural monuments or a change in the essence of these monuments in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.”

According to spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan Leyla Abdullayeva, it is known that Armenia, contrary to international legal obligations, pursues a policy of barbaric plunder and destruction of material and cultural values and cultural monuments or a change in the essence of these monuments in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.

“The illegal activity of Armenia in the territories held by force, including the conduct of illegal archaeological excavations, is a gross violation of international humanitarian law, the provisions of the UNESCO Convention” On the Protection of Cultural Property during Armed Conflict “of 1954 and the Convention of this organization” On measures aimed at prohibition and prevention of illegal import, export and transfer of ownership of cultural property” of 1970, as well as the Hague Convention and its Second Additional Protocol. Armenia bears direct international legal responsibility for its illegal activities, ” Abdullayeva stated.

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On his part, American political scientist, expert in Transatlantic Relations Peter Tase noted that Armenian crimes against the Republic of Azerbaijan are multidimensional.

Piter Teys

American political scientist, expert in Transatlantic Relations Peter Tase

The recent excavations in Azerbaijan’s Aghdam Region are nothing else but a clear violation of international laws and treaties.

“Armenia’s Leadership, over the last three decades has committed many horrendous crimes against the people, archaeology and historic evidences of Azerbaijan. The recent excavations in Azerbaijan’s Aghdam Region are nothing else but a clear violation of international laws and treaties,” Peter Tase said.

According to him, the silence of International community and UNESCO in denouncing the destruction of the Archaeological sites of Azerbaijan in Aghdam Region, by the Armenian Armed Forces, is indeed “another ugly example that illustrates a double standard applied by international institutions towards the national interests and historical sites of Azerbaijan”.

“The well known silence of International actors is harmful and encourages further turmoil in the Caucasus Region,” the expert said.