ArmInfo. Armenia's refusal of Artsakh's right to self- determination means that it imposes on itself the stigma of an aggressor, with all its dangerous consequences. Former Deputy Foreign Minister of Armenia Shavarsh Kocharyan announced on November 9, at the discussions organized by the opposition forces.
At the same time, he recalled that the basis of international law is the UN Charter, which is similar to the Constitution of the state in the international hierarchy. "That is, if any clause contradicts the Constitution, then the Constitution must apply. The same rules apply to the UN Charter. This is important from the point of view that initially, from the very beginning of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, there were two contradictory positions "Armenian position and Azerbaijani position. The Armenian side emphasized the right of peoples to self-determination, while the Azerbaijani side emphasized territorial integrity," he stated.
At the same time, the former head of the Armenian Foreign Ministry noted that there is a misconception in the Armenian society that the principles of "the right of peoples to self-determination" and "territorial integrity" are equivalent. In this regard, he drew attention to the fact that the principle of the right of peoples to self-determination prevails in the UN Charter.
"Article 1, paragraph 2 of the UN Charter on the purposes of the Organization states: "to develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, as well as to take other appropriate measures to strengthen world peace."
Meanwhile, self-determination is already mentioned in the fourth paragraph of the second article of the Charter, which lists the principles according to which it is possible to achieve the goals listed in the first article of the UN Charter: "All Members of the United Nations shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force, as against territorial integrity or political independence of any State, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations." That is, if we are again talking about international law, then the principle of territorial integrity should serve the goal of the right of peoples to self-determination. That is, at least, it cannot be opposed to it," Kocharyan stressed.
At the same time, the diplomat emphasized that the refusal of the state from the principle of the right to self-determination would have catastrophic consequences for it in a conflict situation.
"There was a conflict, thousands of dead, wounded, destruction - who is responsible for this? If the problem concerns self-determination, then it turns out that the aggressor Azerbaijan, which, in response to the realized right of Artsakh to self-determination, resorted to power politics. First, this manifested itself in forced deportations, mass pogroms - Baku, Sumgayit, etc. ,and then turned into a large-scale military aggression against the self-determined Nagorno-Karabakh," the former deputy foreign minister of Armenia noted. According to him, if we take the territorial dispute as a basis, then it will be very difficult for Armenia to defend itself from the stigma of an "aggressor". "If Armenia voluntarily renounces self-determination, lowers the bar, this is nothing but imposing the stigma of an aggressor on itself," said Kocharyan. In this regard, the diplomat touched upon the consequences of such a development of events. And it is the following: "The aggressor must be punished."
In this regard, Kocharyan gave examples of punishments applied in international practice to aggressor countries. "Among the applicable punishments is the forced expulsion of the population both from the territory of the affected state and from one's own territory, if it was transferred to the victim as a punishment. This is the first measure. The second measure is compensation with the territories, the third one is reparation," he said, citing the example of Germany regarding the results of the Second World War as an example of these points. At the same time, the diplomat stated that there were no deadlines for compensation, and it turns out that if you find yourself in the status of an aggressor, then in fact you remain with this stigma forever. Another point he called the restrictions of a defensive nature, which are imposed on this state. Kocharyan stated that the army, the military-industrial complex, the sector of arms procurement, etc. would suffer from this. "The fifth measure is to identify and punish war criminals and bring them to justice. The sixth measure is to control the internal life of the state so that revanchism does not raise its head," he said. In conclusion, the well-known diplomat reiterated that Armenia's refusal of the principle of the right to self-determination of Artsakh is tantamount to impose on itself the stigma of an aggressor, and, moreover, "if we look carefully, we will see that Turkey and Azerbaijan all their actions lead to attracting Armenia accountable precisely as the aggressor. And unfortunately, in this process the current authorities of Armenia assist them". "The Prime Minister of Armenia, by his signature under the tripartite statement dated November 9, 2020, where it is indicated that Armenia is returning territories to Azerbaijan, assigned the country the status of an aggressor. And now, this whole story continues in different directions," Kocharyan summed up.