“Eco-activists” could not have reached the Lachin Corridor without a special permission from the Azerbaijani authorities, the Tatoyan Foundation says after having analyzed the facts.
“As a result of the 44-day war, the entry and exit of citizens to the territories that came under the control of Azerbaijan is regulated by the Azerbaijani legislation, therefore the movement of the “activists” who illegally blocked the only road connecting Artsakh to Armenia could not take place without the permission of the Azerbaijani authorities,” the Foundation says, citing the Azerbaijani President’s decree dated October 29, 2020.
According to the Azerbaijani legislation, the Ministry of Internal Affairs grants permission to enter the territories of Artsakh, currently under Azerbaijani control, based on a citizen’s application (written or electronic).
Studies reveal that citizens can apply for a permission only within the framework of specific visits organized by the state and mainly those citizens (mostly state and cultural figures, journalists) who are informed in advance about being included in the given trip.
In other words, neither an official nor a citizen who is not a public figure can freely enter or freely move through the said areas at their discretion, the Foundation says.
Monitoring of the Azerbaijani press and social networks confirms that there is currently a practice of selectively issuing permits in Azerbaijan, and this policy has caused dissatisfaction inside Azerbaijan itself.
According to media and social networks, many citizens of Azerbaijan complain that only participants of government-organized events can receive permission, and for private visits, access is allowed only to close-to-government circles.
For example, in February 2021, six residents of the Aghjabad region of Azerbaijan tried to enter Fizuli and Hadrut, but were stopped by the police. As the Azerbaijani section of BBC News reports, they were notified by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Azerbaijan that an investigation was under way to give a legal assessment of the actions of these people.
“This proves once again that since December 12, 2022 that the self-proclaimed “eco-activists” that have been blocking the Lachin corridor since December 12, 2022, are in reality agents of the Azerbaijani Government. These people are used as tools for the ethnic cleansing policy of the Azerbaijani authorities.