Baku, June 11, AZERTAC
“The landmine blast on 4th June in Azerbaijan’s Kalbajar region, west of Nagorno-Karabakh, has killed two Azerbaijani journalists Siraj Abishov and Maharram Ibrahimov. The incident is devastating and I feel deep sorrow for the causalities and victims. Explaining the atrocities and damage caused in statistics is nothing compared to seeing in person the actual loss and devastation caused by decades-long conflict,” Executive Director, of the Center for Global and Strategic Studies (CGSS), Islamabad, Pakistan Khalid Taimur Akram said in his interview with AZERTAC.
“I had the opportunity to visit the liberated territories of Azerbaijan on April 2021. I visited Aghdam city and witnessed the war’s repercussions on the region by the brutal actions of the Armenian forces. The Armenian forces had been destroying cities and districts of Azerbaijan since their occupation. There was the destruction of buildings, infrastructures, plundering of natural resources. The religious, historical, and cultural sites were also vandalized.
Since the early 1990s, the occupied region has been littered with mines and unexploded ammunition. It has been referred to as a “carpet of land mines.’’ The worse affected areas are near Tartar, Aghdam, and the districts of Fuzuli and Jabrayil. Experts from the Azerbaijan National Agency for Mine Action have estimated that it could take up to 10 to 13 years to demine the territory. After all these atrocities, Armenia has refused to provide any map of the land mines. Still, Armenia is opting pessimistic approach towards human security.
Several times, Armenia has attempted to violate the ceasefire, making peace process fragile and hampering region’s stability. The major challenge rests with Armenian actions of remaining insensitive to basic human security in the region and not obliging to the international compact. Despite the international interventions to establish peace, the ill-will of Yerevan is blunt to defy the efforts. However, Azerbaijan always has remained fair to the cause of humanity.
Despite all the efforts being done by Azerbaijan’s Government to clarify the contaminated areas, the absence of the landmine maps has imposed serious repercussions on the basic security of life. It is the crucial time for Azerbaijan in order to reconstruct or reconcile the liberated areas which have been completely raised to ground. It is a massive task to clear mines and ammunition from the battlefields in and around the liberated Nagorno-Karabakh region.
Many civilians and military personnel have been killed or injured due to these mines. The recent incident is also a dreadful manifestation of Armenian ruthless and reckless demeanor of not providing map of located mined areas and because of this more lives are endangered.
It has been also observed that the mines might have been planted recently in that area of Kalbajar, which means that Armenia is still engaged in state-sponsored terrorist activities. The international community must urgently react to this dreadful issue. Armenian atrocities and true face have been unveiled in front of the world. Therefore, it is the time when international community should not stay silent and take hard decision against Armenia and put pressure on the leadership to hand over the maps of mined areas. This should be done because of the humanitarian cause. In this regard, constructive role of the neighboring and ally countries of Azerbaijan is highly significant to engage in meaningful efforts for the humanitarian cause to put pressure on the Armenian leadership to provide maps of the mined lands so that probability such severe incidents in future could be minimized,” Khalid Taimur Akram said.
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