BAKU, Azerbaijan, May 26, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --
Azerbaijan is requesting an objective and comprehensive response from the White House to its petition, which is calling for the Obama administration "to assist in the liberation of the Azerbaijani territories occupied by Armenia and the prevention of a humanitarian catastrophe in the region."
The petition was launched by the President of the Association for Civil Society Development in Azerbaijan, Elkhan Suleymanov, in early April, following renewed fighting in the Azerbaijani region of Nagorno-Karabakh and other territories occupied by Armenia. It has received over 330,000 signatures, more than three times necessary to warrant a reply by the White House.
Suleymanov pointed out that the United States is one of five permanent members of the UN Security Council as well as co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, the mediators also consisting of Russia and France, which has made "no progress towards the liberation of our occupied territories," as the petition states.
"The White House's response will demonstrate the extent of its objectivity as a center of superpower and guarantor of democratic development, international security and international law principles," Suleymanov said.
Earlier this year, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe or PACE - the continent's voice of democracy and human rights - called for the immediate withdrawal of Armenian forces from the Azerbaijani territories and further accused Armenia of "environmental aggression" and "deliberately depriving" Azerbaijanis of water flowing from the Sarsang reservoir, which is located in the Armenian-occupied territory of Nagorno-Karabakh.
Suleymanov said the Armenian government would be held accountable in case of a possible humanitarian catastrophe at the occupied Sarsang reservoir. He added that the response by the White House, which is expected in early June, "will demonstrate the U.S. attitude to decisions of the Council of Europe" and expressed hope that the U.S. will state its "clear opinion for the prevention of this catastrophe."
"Should the U.S. ignore and not support our call," Suleymanov added, "the whole world community will be responsible for this possible humanitarian catastrophe."
The Azerbaijani region of Nagorno-Karabakh and seven surrounding provinces were occupied by Armenia during the post-Soviet power vacuum, resulting in about 30,000 deaths and nearly one million refugees and internally displaced people. In addition to PACE, many other international bodies, including the United Nations, European Parliament and the OSCE have called for the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of Armenian troops from the Azerbaijani territories.
SOURCE Azerbaijan Monitor