Mock lawsuits against Armenian POWs in Azerbaijan initiated in gross violation of international humanitarian law

Armenia has drawn the attention of the UN Human Rights Council to the mock lawsuits against Armenian Prisoners of War in Azerbaijan. 

Addressing the 46th session of the Council, Armenia’s Permanent Representative Andranik Hovhannisyan said ” European Court of Human Rights adopted 201 interim measures with regard to the combatants and civilians of Armenian origin detained by Azerbaijan, but the latter refused to acknowledge the detention of most of them, failed to meaningfully cooperate with the said Court and launched proceedings against 58 detainees, even though the internati9nal humanitarisn law (IHL) specifically requires to set PoWs free after hostilities.”

“Should any charges be pushed, IHL prescribes fair trails based on presumption of innocence and right to be tried by an independent and impartial court,” the Ambassador noted.

“Azerbaijan violates all these norms. It failed to provide prior notification about judicial proceedings, to specify the charges, as well as to extend appropriate legal assistance to the detainees. None of them is represented by a lawyer of their choice in a country where independence of courts is basically non-existent. The judge, who presides over the trials, is notorious for the politically-motivated sentences imposed upon several Azerbaijani HRDs,” the Ambassador noted.

IHe stressed that it is beyond reasonable doubt that this mistreatment is a flagrant denial of justice and hostage taking in gross violation of IHL.

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