Official Baku should appeal to official Stepanakert regarding the release of its citizens from jail, Artsakh’s Foreign Ministry says.
Commenting on a recent statement by the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry that Azerbaijan expects Armenia to release two of its citizens, MFA Spokesperson Artak Nersisyan said “Azerbaijan’s appeal to Armenia is untenable.”
The comments come after Artsakh released Azerbaijani citizen Elnur Huseynzade, who served a two-year term for illegally crossing Artsakh’s state border. Huseynzade asked the Artsakh authorities not to send him back to Azerbaijan. The possibility of transferring him to a third country is being considered.
The Spokesperson said that the two other Azerbaijani citizens that are currently serving a jail term in Artsakh “have committed grave crimes.”
“Dilham Askerov and Shahbaz Guliyev, mentioned by Azerbaijan, are criminals who have been found guilty of kidnapping and killing an underage boy, as well as a range of other crimes committed in the territory of the Republic of Artsakh,” Artak Nersisyan said.
He reminded that that Artsakh Foreign Ministry has called on official Baku to take a reciprocal step and release the Armenian hostages held in Azerbaijan, first of all, those with obvious health problems.
“The Azerbaijani side rejected this proposal by demonstrating both complete indifference to the fate of its citizen and full ignorance of its commitments assumed under international humanitarian law. The position of the Azerbaijani authorities on this issue leaves no doubt on the real intentions of official Baku,” the Spokesperson said.