ArmInfo.On February 20-27, the United Nations Working Group on the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination, headed by Ravindran Daniel paid a working visit to Armenia.
As the press service of the RA MFA reports, the aim of the visit of the Working Group was exploring the existing legal framework of Armenia after the ratification of the International Convention Against the Recruitment, Use, Financing and Training of Mercenaries and measures undertaken for the effective implementation of the Convention.
On February 20-22, the Working Group had meetings with different agencies of Armenia. Afterwards, the representatives of the group had a working visit to the city of Kapan in the Syunik region, where they had meetings with the Head of the Syunik Regional Administration and representatives of the Office of the Ombudsman in Kapan.
The Working Group had also meetings with the representatives of the civil society. On February 27, a final meeting was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. During the meeting the Working Group presented information on the work done by the group in the framework of the visit, as well as preliminary assessment and recommendations.
During the final meeting, Deputy Foreign Minister of Armenia Vahe Gevorgyan mentioned that mercenarism and threats coming from it have regional character, and the widespread use of mercenaries by Azerbaijan during the war unleashed against the people of Nagorno-Karabakh in 2020, attests to it. It was noted that the involvement of international actors, including the relevant UN bodies, is necessary to resist the regional threats.
An agreement was reached to continue and deepen cooperation within the framework of the mandate of the United Nations Working Group on the use of mercenaries.
During the hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh in the fall of 2020, a number of authoritative media, including the Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal wrote about hundreds of Syrian mercenaries associated with Turkey deployed in Artsakh, and about their readiness to be sent to the Karabakh conflict zone.. Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad then stated that mercenaries from Syria were being transferred to Nagorno- Karabakh, and Turkey was using terrorists from Syria and other countries in Nagorno-Karabakh. In turn, director of the Foreign Intelligence Service of the Russian Federation, Sergei Naryshkin, also reported that, according to information available to the Service, mercenaries from international terrorist organizations fighting in the Middle East t were actively involved in the conflict zone, and it is about hundreds and even thousands of radicals. French President Emmanuel Macron also spoke about the transfer of 300 Syrian mercenaries through Turkish territory to Baku in early October 2020.