A group of civil society organizations of Armenia, Open Society Foundations – Armenia, “Transparency International Anti-Corruption Center” NGO, “Protection of Rights Without Borders” NGO, Law Development and Protection Foundation and Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly -Vanadzor submitted an alternative report to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) on violations of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination by Azerbaijan.
The Organizations conducted fact-finding mission documenting violations of human rights and international humanitarian law committed during the 2020 war in Nagorno-Karabakh, as well as documenting antiArmenian state policy of Azerbaijan.
“The state policy of Armenophobia, hate speech by high-rank Azerbaijani officials against Armenians, state-run propaganda of de-Armenization of Armenian cultural and religious heritage, destruction of cultural and historic Armenian sites, absolute impunity for ethnically-motivated hate crimes against Armenians, including beheading while alive, and torture, result in the growing number of hate crimes against Armenians and heinous incidents during and after the 2020 war in Nagorno-Karabakh. The above-presented examples and events demonstrate that there is a state policy of ethnic hatred and discrimination against ethnic Armenians in Azerbaijan which has not been eliminated following the publication of the Concluding Observations of 2016, but has, unfortunately, exacerbated especially in the context Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and aftermath the war of 2020”, says the civil society organizations’ submission.
The Civil Society Organizations recommended the Committee to urge the government of Azerbaijan to put an end of the inflammatory language, especially by high-rank officials and in public domain, including the President Aliyev, to condemn and investigate the statements by politicians, including high-rank officials, that incite racial hatred against Armenians and to prosecute those responsible, to put an end to the impunity for the hate crimes against Armenians, to investigate the instances of hate crimes committed against Armenians, including people fallen under the control of Azerbaijan in the context of the armed conflict and prosecute those responsible.
The organizations also urged the Committee to take immediate and effective measures to eliminate the state policy of racial discrimination and hatred against Armenians and to promote tolerance and to combat existing stereotypes and prejudices against Armenians, to ensure respect and effective protection to the Armenian cultural and historical heritage on the territories under the control of Azerbaijan.
The full report submitted to CERD is available here.