Azerbaijan has banned all humanitarian transportation in and out of Artsakh through the Lachin corridor

15 JUNE 2023, Press Releases

Following its military provocation at the Hakari bridge in the morning of June 15, Azerbaijan has banned all kinds of humanitarian transportation in both ways, including people and cargo, through its illegal checkpoint installed on April 23. By this, Azerbaijan once again blatantly violates its international obligations towards ensuring the safe and unhindered passage through the Lachin corridor under the Trilateral Statement of November 9, 2020 and disregards the implementation of the International Court of Justice’s (ICJ) decision of February 22, 2023.

25 patients and their accompanying relatives which were to be transported from Artsakh to Armenia by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) today were not allowed to pass through the illegal checkpoint over the Hakari bridge by the Azerbaijani side, being forced to return back to Stepanakert. In addition, the scheduled transportation of people with urgent humanitarian needs, as well as the trucks with humanitarian supplies, which were to be carried out by the Russian peacekeeping forces through the Goris-Stepanakert Highway, was also cancelled.

Azerbaijan uses the already limited scale of humanitarian transportation and assistance to Artsakh, carried out only by the ICRC and Russian peacekeepers, as an advantage to create unbearable living conditions, terrorize, intimidate and exert psychological pressure on the peaceful population of Artsakh, in full accordance and consistency with its systematic policy of ethnic cleansing against Artsakh.

The humanitarian nature and vital importance of the Lachin corridor for the people of Artsakh has been clearly reflected in the Trilateral Statement of November 9, 2020, which granted a special regime to the corridor. By cutting the corridor of life of Artsakh, Azerbaijan not only grossly violates its international obligations, but also reaffirms its true intentions with regard to Artsakh – the destruction of its indigenous Armenian population.

The Human Rights Defender of Artsakh has numerously warned the international community about the existential threats and danger for the people of Artsakh in connection with the installation of the illegal checkpoint in the Lachin corridor. Today’s incident once again reaffirms our concerns and highlights the persistent and increasing nature of these threats, since the deliberate and criminal blocking of humanitarian transportation by Azerbaijan further deepens the humanitarian crisis caused by the blockade of Artsakh.