On resolutions regarding Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict adopted within the 44th session of Council of Foreign Ministers of OIC

On July 10-11, the 44th session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the OIC member states was held in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire. Ogtay Gurbanov represented Azerbaijan at the event as Special Envoy of the Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov. At the session O. Gurbanov delivered a speech on behalf of Minister Elmar Mammadyarov.

During his speech the Azerbaijani representative touched upon the issues such as declaration of 2017 as the Year of Islamic Solidarity by the Head of State and the successful holding of the Islamic Solidarity Games in our country. He also expressed appreciation for the firm and fair position on the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict by the OIC Member States. It was also mentioned that most recently on July 4th, Armenia has conducted deliberate shelling of the Azerbaijani village of Alkhanly, as a result of which Azerbaijani civilians, including women and 2-years old girl were killed and it constitutes yet another serious violation of international humanitarian and human rights law by Armenia. Furthermore, more resolute and targeted measures by the international community are required to end impunity for such violations.

The session adopted a number of important resolutions on Azerbaijan, including resolutions on Armenia's agression against Azerbaijan and the destruction of religious and cultural heritage in the occupied territories. Also, separate resolutions on the 25th anniversary of the Khojaly genocide and solidarity with the victims of the genocide and Declaration of year of 2017 as the Year of Islamic Solidarity by President Ilham Aliyev were adopted.

The resolution entitled "The aggression of the Republic of Armenia against the Republic of Azerbaijan" demands the implementation of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and expresses concern that Armenia has not yet implemented demands contained therein. Also, all states are urged to refrain from providing any supplies of arms and military equipment to Armenia and not to allow the use of their territories for transit of such supplies. At the same time, acts of destruction, plundering and vandalism of archaeological, cultural and religious monuments in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan are sharply condemned. It also calls for the earliest settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijan conflict on the basis of sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of the internationally recognized borders of the Republic of Azerbaijan, in accordance with the generally accepted norms and principles of international law, relevant UN Security Council resolutions, as well as OSCE documents and resolutions. Another important issue in the aforementioned resolution is that the Council of Foreign Ministers decides to instruct the Permanent Representatives of Member States to the United Nations in New York, while voting in the UN General Assembly, to give full support to the issue of territorial integrity of the Republic of Azerbaijan. The resolution also reaffirms its total solidarity with and full support for the efforts undertaken by the Government and people of Azerbaijan to defend their country.

The resolution titled "Solidarity with the Victims of Khojaly Massacre of 1992" strongly condemns the mass atrocities against the Azerbaijani civilians and military personnel committed by the armed forces of the Republic of Armenia in the town of Khojaly, Republic of Azerbaijan, in February 1992, and other occupied territories of the Republic of Azerbaijan during the conflict. It also calls upon Member States to exert due efforts for recognition of the crimes perpetrated in the town of Khojaly and other occupied territories of the Republic of Azerbaijan during the conflict as war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide at the national and international levels. The resolution also highlights the activity of the "Justice for Khojaly" International civil awareness campaign, and invites Member States to continue supporting the campaign and actively participate in its activities.

The other adopted resolution is about "Declaration of 2017 as a Year of Islamic Solidarity in Azerbaijan". The resolution welcomes the declaration by the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, H.E Mr. Ilham Aliyev, of the Year 2017 as a Year of Islamic Solidarity in Azerbaijan and expresses its gratitude to the people and authorities of the Republic of Azerbaijan for the warm hospitality and excellent organization of the 4th Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku on 12-22 May 2017. It also welcomes the declaration of the city of Nakhchivan of the Republic of Azerbaijan as the Islamic Cultural Capital of 2018.

The document adopted under the name of "Destruction of monuments belonging to Islamic history and culture in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan as a result of Armenia's aggression against Azerbaijan" describes historical, cultural, archaeological, anthropological and ethnographic monuments and cultural and cultural samples of the occupied territories of Azerbaijan as an integral part of the Islamic heritage and strongly criticizes the destruction of that heritage.

It is noted that the Republic of Armenia by such actions has violated the Convention on the Protection of Cultural Property and its Additional Protocols during armed conflicts.

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