Statement by the Foreign Ministry of Armenia on the continued blockade of the Lachin Corridor03 January, 2023
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs draws the attention of international partners and all progressive humanity to the fact that for more than three weeks, Azerbaijan has been keeping Nagorno-Karabakh under blockade, thus grossly violating the Lachin Corridor regime set by the Trilateral Statement of November 9, 2020, and cutting off the lifeline connecting Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia and the rest of the world. For 23 days now, Azerbaijan, in front of the entire world and continuing to pursue its policy of ethnic cleansing, compels the population of Nagorno-Karabakh to a forced displacement.
The humanitarian crisis in Nagorno-Karabakh is worsening with each passing day. The shortage of essential goods, food and medicine is becoming more and more noticeable. The danger of malnutrition is tangible. Hundreds of families left on different sides of the Azerbaijani blockade remain separated. 120,000 people in fact became captives.
Azerbaijani claims that the Lachin Corridor is open are absolutely groundless, which is attested to by the fact that only by the vehicles of the International Committee of the Red Cross the limited number of patients in the event of life-threatening situations are allowed to be transported to the Republic of Armenia.
Under these circumstances, we highlight the importance of holding the urgent meeting of the UN Security Council on December 20, 2022, which was convened in response to the request of the Armenian side to discuss the blockade of the Lachin Corridor and its humanitarian consequences for the population of Nagorno-Karabakh. We highly appreciate the publicly expressed and clear calls by the vast majority of the Security Council members to end the blockade of the corridor by Azerbaijan and provide access to Nagorno-Karabakh for international organisations. We also welcome the efforts of France during the ten-day period following the aforementioned meeting of the Security Council aimed at adopting the press statement of the President of the Security Council regarding the situation.
Armenia will continue taking targeted steps in all possible formats, including within the framework of the UN Security Council and international and regional structures, to ensure a resolute response and actions arising from their mandate and functions, to bring an end to the blockade of the Lachin Corridor and the resulting humanitarian crisis faced by 120,000 people of Nagorno-Karabakh.
We also consider it imperative to send an international fact-finding mission to Nagorno-Karabakh and the Lachin Corridor to assess the humanitarian situation on the ground, as well as to ensure unhindered humanitarian access to Nagorno-Karabakh for relevant UN bodies.
Azerbaijan should immediately unblock the Lachin Corridor in line with the principles set in paragraph 6 of the November 9, 2020 Trilateral Statement, which stipulates that Azerbaijan shall guarantee the safety of movement of citizens, vehicles and cargo through the Lachin Corridor, and that the Lachin Corridor shall remain under the control of the peacekeeping contingent of the Russian Federation deployed in Nagorno-Karabakh. Since the provisions of the Trilateral Statement have been violated as a result of Azerbaijan's illegal actions, we also expect the Russian Federation to undertake precise efforts to eliminate this flagrant violation without any preconditions.