Geoffrey Robertson: Nagorno-Karabakh originally belonged to Armenia

Geoffrey Robertson

Internationally renowned human rights lawyer Geoffrey Robertson published an article in The Independent stressing that the Nagorno-Karabakh region, currently occupied and/or blockaded by Azerbaijan, originally belonged to Armenia and has always been inhabited mainly by Armenians.

In the article, the Australia-born human rights barrister said that Russia, Great Britain, the USA, France and China have the power to stop Azerbaijan from besieging Nagorno-Karabakh's 120,000 Armenian inhabitants.

He stressed that the blockade is a crime against humanity and contradicts a number of agreements, but the Azerbaijanis have besieged for two months and are still continuing the blockade.

It is noted that the Lachin Corridor is a vital link for the daily delivery of 400 tons of essential goods to the Armenians of Karabakh, as well as for the movement of citizens, schoolchildren and ambulances.

"Of course, it would be faster by air transportation, but the government of Azerbaijan has threatened to shoot down any passenger or cargo plane that tries to land in Stepanakert, the capital of Nagorno-Karabakh," he wrote.

"The country is a hostage of Azerbaijan and history. it originally belonged to Armenia and has always been inhabited mainly by Armenians, known for their early Christian churches and unique carpets.

"In the 19th century it was occupied by Russia, and in 1921 Stalin arbitrarily and wrongly included this Christian enclave as an independent region within Muslim Azerbaijan.

"After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the people of Nagorno-Karabakh demanded independence and fought a war to achieve it."

Geoffrey Robertson noted that after the victory, Armenians enjoyed relative peace until Azerbaijan attacked in 2020. He also referred to the trilateral declaration of November 9, 2020.

"Russia stood as the guarantor of the agreement. Russia assigned 2,000 'peacekeepers' to monitor the corridor, but they proved unable, or perhaps unwilling, to disperse the self-declared 'environmental activists' blocking the corridor, who are encouraged by the Azerbaijani government, which generally bans demonstrations and imprisons protesters."

The columnist noticed that many of the "protesters" have tattoos, which proves that they are members of the "Grey Wolves".

It is emphasised that the "protesters" are encouraged by dictator Ilham Aliyev. The author of the article also reminds about the meeting of the UN Security Council held on December 20 and the demand of the members.

The article mentions that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov only belatedly contacted his Azerbaijani counterpart and urged them to disperse the demonstration, adding that Russia has lost its influence after the events in Ukraine.

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