On June 24, the Human Rights Ombudsman of the Republic of Artsakh Gegham Stepanyan participated as a special speaker in the side event organized by the International Humanitarian Law Unit at Maat Foundation for Peace, Development and Human Rights on the sidelines of the 47th session of the Human Rights Council and the humanitarian affairs segment of the Economic and Social Council.
The Ombudsman presented the war crimes committed by the Azerbaijani armed forces during the Azerbaijani-Turkish aggression in the Fall of 2020, the violations of international humanitarian law, as well as humanitarian situation in Artsakh due to the military aggression. He pointed out the problems of the displaced people, stressed the urgent need for international organizations to provide humanitarian assistance to the people of Artsakh.
Touching upon the issue of illegal detention of the Armenian POWs and civilian captives in Azerbaijan, the Ombudsman considered unacceptable the silence of the international community against the fake and illegal trials in Azerbaijan, insisting that the international community should put more pressure on Azerbaijan for the return of the Armenian captives.
The Human Rights Ombudsman provided details on the cases of vandalism of the Armenian cultural heritage by Azerbaijan during and after the war, noting that the relevant international bodies and UNESCO, in particular, are not taking concrete steps to save Armenian culture in the territories occupied by Azerbaijan, despite regular warnings about the threat to the Armenian cultural monuments.
Gegham Stepanyan condemned the isolation of Artsakh by the international community, emphasizing that it is because of the isolation that the international community does not properly realize the essence of the problem, which is not a territorial dispute, but the struggle of the people of Artsakh to protect their rights.