(MENAFN- Trend News Agency)
BAKU, Azerbaijan, February 1. On January 31,
2023, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) held public hearings
on Azerbaijan's request for the indication of additional
provisional measures submitted in the case concerning the
Application of the International Convention on the Elimination of
All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD) (Azerbaijan v. Armenia),
trend reports citing
Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry.
This hearing has followed Azerbaijan's second request for
provisional measures submitted on 4 January 2023, asking the Court
to take“urgent action needed to stem the mounting casualties” due
to the continued deliberate planting of landmines and explosive
booby traps in Azerbaijani civilian areas by Armenia's forces.
Since the end of the 2020 conflict, 282 Azerbaijanis have become
victims of mines or other explosive devices, the vast majority of
which were civilians, including 3 journalists.
Azerbaijan's request has reflected new evidence demonstrating
that Armenia, contradicting representations it made to the ICJ in
October 2021, continued to lay landmines on Azerbaijan's territory,
even after agreeing under the November 2020 Trilateral Statement to
the cessation of all hostilities. Since August 2022, over 2,700
landmines manufactured in Armenia in 2021 have been discovered in
Azerbaijan. Armenia's conduct stands as an egregious violation of
Armenia's obligations under CERD and other international law.
Over 1,600 of these illegal landmines, as well as booby traps,
have been planted in civilian areas from which Azerbaijanis were
expelled 30 years ago as a result of Armenia's ethnic cleansing
campaign and illegal occupation of Azerbaijan's territory,
preventing these displaced families and communities from returning
to their homes.
Azerbaijan has requested the ICJ to indicate the provisional
measures that Armenia shall immediately take all necessary steps to
enable Azerbaijan to undertake the prompt, safe and effective
demining of the towns, villages, and other areas to which
Azerbaijani civilians will return in the Lachin and Kalbajar
districts, and other formerly occupied districts of Azerbaijan,
including by providing information about the location, quantity,
type and characteristics of landmines, booby traps and any other
explosive devices in these areas, in order to enable Azerbaijani
internally displaced persons to return to their homes.
Azerbaijan has also asked the Court to indicate that Armenia
shall immediately cease and desist from any further efforts to
plant or to sponsor or support the planting of landmines and booby
traps in these areas to which Azerbaijani civilians will return in
Azerbaijan's territory, including, but not limited to, the use of
the Lachin road for this purpose.
Previously, on 7 December 2021, the Court granted Azerbaijan's
first request for provisional measures to protect against Armenia's
ongoing violations of CERD, ordering Armenia to take all necessary
measures to prevent the incitement and promotion of racial hatred
targeted at Azerbaijanis.