German Bundestag hosts discussion on Armenian POWs held in Azerbaijan

Armenian Human Rights Defender Arman Tatoyan presented a report at a special online discussion on Armenian prisoners of war in Azerbaijan organized in the German Bundestag.

The discussion took place under the chairmanship of Michael Brandt, Chairman of the Bundestag Standing Committee on Human Rights, and Marian Wendt, Chair of the Bundestag Petition Committee. More than 70 German deputies took part in the discussion.

The Defender raised the issue of the urgency of the return of prisoners of war — servicemen and civilians — of the Armenian side detained in Azerbaijan. Arman Tatoyan noted that the Azerbaijani authorities are artificially delaying and politicizing the process so as to cause mental suffering to the Armenian society and especially to the families of the captives, and in order to create tension in the country.

The Human Rights Defender of Armenia presented in detail the international humanitarian and human rights rules which require the immediate release of prisoners and their safe return. The Ombudsman emphasized the gross violations of international humanitarian law and the rights of prisoners who are wrongly portrayed as “terrorists” given the circumstances of ongoing armed conflict.

The Ombudsman also provided information on war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the Azerbaijani armed forces during the war (beheadings, torture, humiliation of bodies, etc).

Arman Tatoyan thanked the members of the German Parliament for the discussion.

The Human Rights Defender hailed the assistance of the Armenian Embassy in Germany in organizing this discussion.

The evidence on the Azerbaijani atrocities and torture collected by the Human Rights Defender of Armenia was passed on by the Armenian Ambassador Ashot Smbatyan to Amnesty International in Germany.

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