The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Artsakh strongly condemns the visit of the delegation of the UNESCO-related National Commissions of the Turkish International Culture Organization to the occupied Armenian Shushi on April 8.

“It is obvious that this illegal visit, as well as the holding of other similar events in the occupied Armenian city of Shushi, are aimed at legitimizing the results of the war of aggression and illegal use of force unleashed by Azerbaijan and its allies against the Republic of Artsakh and its people in 2020. 

We emphasize once again that the city of Shushif is an integral part of Artsakh in territorial, cultural, economic and historical terms. The visit of the National Commissions on UNESCO issues to Shushi seems even more disrespectful and provocative in view of the illegal blockade of Artsakh which has been going on for 4 months, the systematic destruction of religious, historical and cultural monuments of the Armenian people in the territories under the control of the Azerbaijani armed forces including the ancient Armenian city of Shushi and the falsification of their identity, as well as the continuous obstacles caused by the Azerbaijani authorities to the sending of a UNESCO evaluation mission to Artsakh for the purpose of cultural inventory of heritage objects and studying their condition. 

The ongoing cases of vandalism and desecration of churches and other cultural and religious monuments by Azerbaijan in Artsakh, including the occupied Armenian city of Shushi, constitute flagrant violations of international law, as well as the decision of the UN International Court of Justice on interim measures of 7 December 2021. – said in the statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

The Government of Western Armenia would like to remind that the Republic of Artsakh has not yet adopted a law on the autochthony of Artsakh Armenians and that the authorities in Baku are already preparing for the adoption of a law on Armenians as newcomers to Artsakh. 

We believe that it is time to correct the mistakes made and adopt a law according to which the world of Artsakh, including the region of Artsakh of the mountains and the plain and Shahumyan, is a region of the Republic of Western Armenia, as stipulated by the legislation of the Republic of Armenia of 1920, and a citizen of Artsakh living there is an autochthonous of this territory.