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Armenia’s response to United States: Crimes of Azerbaijani raiders exposed, documented and proved

“The crimes committed by the two Azeri raiders, including kidnapping and brutal killing of a 17-year-old boy, have been revealed, documented and proven. The international community is well aware of how Azerbaijan welcomes and glorifies murderers, as it happened in the notorious case of Ramil Safarov and others,” Foreign Minister of Armenia Edward Nalbandian said commenting to Armenian parliamentarians on the U.S. Department’s calls for release, as a “gesture of humanism”, of Azerbaijani citizens Dilham Askerov and Shakhaz Guliyev who were detained in Karabakh.

“Naturally, the international community speaks about humanism. But what humanism can one speak about in the case of Azerbaijan? How many Armenian civilians in Azerbaijan have been humiliated, tortured and killed by Azerbaijanis, like terrorist organizations do. What kind of humanism did inspire Baku when it refused the calls of the international organizations, including the Red Cross, OSCE, OSCE MG co-chairs to create condition for retrieving the bodies of the pilots of the downed helicopter,” Nalbandian said.

“All this comes to prove that Azerbaijan has its unique perception of humanism, and uses it to deepen hatred and xenophobia,” the foreign minister stated.

The minister disclaimed the reports that the OSCE MG co-chairs raised the given issue in the course of the last visit to Yerevan.

To recall, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland addressed the Karabakh conflict while on a visit to Yerevan on February 18 and appealed for handover of the two Azerbaijanis as a “humanitarian gesture.”  “I did speak about the terrible crime that was committed, it was obviously a crime. That said, we do call on relevant authorities to make the kind of humanitarian gesture that I spoke of at my previous press event,” Nuland said. Stepanakert, in turn, called Nuland’s calls for release of the saboteurs inadmissible.  David Babayan, Spokesperson for the NKR President said the Artsakh Republic leadership had repeatedly declared that Shahbaz Guliyev and Dilham Askerov, and the third, liquidated raider Hasan Hasanov, committed “terrorist acts” in the territory of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (NKR). “The faced a transparent trial with participation of mass media and public organizations,” he said.

To recall, the Stepanakert General Court sentenced Dilham Askerov and Shahbaz Gulyev to life imprisonment and 20 years in prison, respectively, for illegal crossing of the state border, committing sabotage attacks and vicious murder of a 17-year-old resident of Karvachar Smbat Tsakanyan and Armenian officer Sargis Abrahamyan, as well as wounding 37-year-old Karine Davtyan.

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