ArmInfo. Head of the "Bright Armenia" faction, Edmon Marukyan, in his speech at PACE, touched upon the problem of Armenian prisoners of war and the issue of establishing peace in the region.
The MP, in particular, said: "In my speech, I would like to touch upon the decision of the PACE Bureau, which refused to organize an emergency discussion of the issue of Armenian prisoners of war in Azerbaijan. I think we are discussing many important issues here, but this issue is not inferior in importance to any other issue, although the Bureau ignored it. And after that, the head of the Azerbaijani delegation speaks here, speaking about building an environment of trust and peace. But how can we talk about building an envionment of trust if after the ceasefire Azerbaijan continues to hold Armenian prisoners of warand civilians, torturing them.
The European Court of Human Rights took interim measures against Azerbaijan on this issue, but they ignore the court's decisions, moreover, after that they killed a prisoner of war. Azerbaijanis revere its servicemen, who decapitate Armenian soldiers, decapitate a peaceful elderly resident of Shushi. And after all this, they talk about trust and peace.
I think we have two ways out of this situation. One of them is to follow the call of the Azerbaijani delegate on the issue of establishing peace in the region. But then it is necessary to release the Armenian prisoners of war, civilians and only then talk about other issues. And if the Azerbaijanis continue to hold our prisoners of war and civilians in their prisons, it should be noted that they are terrorists - this is the style of work of a terrorist country. Why? Since only terrorists can be held hostage, and preconditions are created for their release.
So how can a country that behaves like a terrorist be a member state of the Council of Europe, where the cornerstones are the rule of law, human rights and democracy? That is why I call on the international community, the Council of Europe, all members of this organization, all relevant bodies of the Council of Europe to put pressure on the authorities of Azerbaijan in order to release the Armenian prisoners of war and civilians.
Otherwise, Azerbaijan will be considered a terrorist state, which is holding hostages, using them against another member state of the Council of Europe to put forward new preconditions after the signing of the ceasefire. Armenia, for its part, has fulfilled all the points of the ceasefire agreement, and Azerbaijan is violating its 8th point, not releasing our prisoners of war, civilians. Thus, I call on all members of the Council of Europe to put pressure on the Azerbaijani authorities in order to release the Armenian prisoners of war and civilians>.
To note, the winter session of the PACE started yesterday. In addition to the main agenda, 7 proposals were put forward to discuss urgent and current issues, including the unjustified delay in the return of Armenian prisoners of war and other prisoners to their homeland by the Azerbaijani authorities as a violation of European international human rights standards. However, the PACE Bureau refused to include this issue on the agenda.