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 Wednesday, June 22 2022 14:16

CE, PACE should be very vocal in calling state-level hate speech,  racism and xenophobia by name - Armenian MP

CE, PACE should be very vocal in calling state-level hate speech,  racism and xenophobia by name - Armenian MP

ArmInfo. The member of the RA NA delegation to PACE Sona Ghazaryan gave a speech at PACE Plenary Session.

"I highly appreciate the report, well-penned and very much on time.  Political parties, among other actors, are responsible for combating  hate speech, racism, and xenophobia. However, what we often see today  is that political parties, instead, build their election campaigns,  rhetoric, sometimes even actions on hatred, racism, and xenophobia.

This happens in Europe, and this happens beyond Europe.

And then sometimes, these political parties and their leaders find  themselves in their own trap. They build up and build on hate so much  that they then do not know how to control and deal with the amount of  hatred they have created themselves.

This is especially dangerous when hatred is proliferated towards a  society living in close proximity, towards a neighbor. And even more  dangerous when there is an unresolved conflict in need of a robust  peace process. This is the case in the context of the  Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the systemic Armenophobia in  Azerbaijan.

You know too well the case of the trophy park in Baku that glorifies  war and that depicted Armenian soldiers in captivity degrading human  dignity and dehumanizing Armenians. Schoolchildren were taken to this  park. This was an outrageous case of state-sponsored hatred and  racism. The mannequins of Armenian soldiers were taken down only  after Armenia filed a case at the International Court of Justice  based on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial  Discrimination.

The International Court of Justice has already produced an interim  decision in which it calls on Azerbaijan to "take all necessary  measures to prevent the incitement and promotion of racial hatred and  discrimination, including by its officials and public institutions,  targeted at persons of Armenian national or ethnic origin." I would  like to draw your attention to the fact that the International Court  of Justice has stated that it is the officials and public  institutions in Azerbaijan that incite and promote hatred against  Armenians.

I believe that the Council of Europe and its Parliamentary Assembly  should also be very vocal and direct calling state-level hate speech,  racism and xenophobia by name, and we should together combat this  because hatred is a poison similar to mercury; it is very hard to  collect once it spills over." Sona Ghazaryan said in her speech.

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