Azerbaijan carrying out a policy of ethnic cleansing in Artsakh – PM Pashinyan

Establishment of an illegal checkpoint in the Lachin Corridor, the blockade of electricity and natural gas supplies to Nagorno-Karabakh for over six months have extremely aggravated the humanitarian situation, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said at the Government sitting today.

“Whole during the previous month Azerbaijan was providing some access through the Lachin Corridor through the Red Cross and Russian peacekeepers for propaganda purposes, from yesterday even the supply of essential food to Nagorno Karabakh has been stopped. In other words, food does not enter Nagorno Karabakh from the outside world, and citizens in need of urgent medical assistance are not allowed to pass through the Lachin Corridor,” PM Pashinyan said.

“These actions once again substantiate our fear that Azerbaijan is conducting a policy of ethnic cleansing in Nagorno-Karabakh. Although in this case it is not about fear, but about the start of actions. How else does the ethnic cleansing happen? The supply of food, gas, and electricity to the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh is blocked, citizens doing agricultural work are being targeted, the possibility of movement is blocked even for patients in extremely critical condition,” he added.

The Prime Minister noted that in response to the situation it’s necessary to raise awareness internationally, not only at the level of organizations and foreign governments, but also at the level of communities.

“We also continue to believe that the Baku-Stepanakert dialogue, necessary for ensuring the rights and security of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh, is extremely important within the framework of the international mechanism, and we should hope that concrete steps will be taken in this direction,” PM Pashinyan stated.

At the same time, he said, “no matter how difficult, our work towards the normalization of relations with Azerbaijan and establishment of peace must be continuous. We need to be consistent about this.”

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