Azerbaijan’s grand experiment of scaring everyone with its blacklist and making the Russian-Israeli blogger Alexander Lapshin an example has failed spectacularly. All kudo’s go to Lapshin, of course. What a guy! But let’s start from the beginning, shall we?
The official flag of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (Artsakh) was raised high and proud in Boston’s Armenian Heritage Park on Tuesday as Armenian president Serzh Sargsyan came by on a working visit to the USA. The flag jumped right out of every official photo published by Armenian President’s website. You could just see that they’re making a point. And rightly so. Continue reading
On February 20, 1988 a decision was adopted in the extraordinary seesion of Nagorno-Karabakh region’s Council of People’s Deputies to present a petition to the government bodies of Azerbaijani and Armenian SSRs to hand over the NKAR to Armenia.
The maps below via Pigh illustrate the situation on this date, which marked the start of the Karabakh Movement and today.
According to the plan, which Hurriet Daily News claims is part of a Turkey brokered Nagorno-Karabakh deal, Armenia would give away some towns surrounding Nagorno-Karabakh region to Azerbaijan in a specific timetable and repatriate Azeris fled the region; administration of NKR would be handed to a provisional body. Furthermore, the newspaper says Karvachar (Kelbajar) would be handed out to Azerbaijan, the railroad and highway between Azerbaijan and Armenia would be opened and international peacekeeprs would be deployed at the border region between Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh.
One wonders, however, how could all these details emerge out of thin air? Did Hurriet just invent it all? Why would it want to do it? Who do we trust?
In connection with the anniversary of the NKR State Independence Referendum and the Constitution Day NKR President Bako Sahakyan has issued a congratulatory address to the citizens of the republic, where he has noted: “On very day in 1991 our people officially sealed their will to form free, independent and sovereign state. And it was not a coincident that 15 years later on this very day of 2006 the people of Artsakh once again expressed their resoluteness to further strengthen and develop independent statehood and on a nation-wide referendum adopted the basic of the country – the NKR Constitution. It has marked the irreversibility of our state policy to build democratic country, our commitment to the follow international norms and integrate with the civilized world.”
Remarkably, the tiny Nagorno-Karabakh Republic is often much more advanced in terms of democratisation, basic freedoms, culture to hold referendums and elections, than either Armenia or Azerbaijan, which assume the responsability to speak about the future status of Karabakh.
Joining in with my congratulations to the people of Karabakh, I want to also share my vision: the only way for Karabakh to remain independent and become internationally recognized, is to pursue further reforms and improvement of its fragile democracy. The only way, for Armenia to attain greater moral weight in speaking on behalf of NKR, is for Armenia to overcome its major problems with democracy and human rights, which were especially visible this year as a result of 2008 Presidential elections and the violence that followed afterwards.
PS: Coincidentally, today is also the International Day of Human Rights.