An article under the title “Archeological dig goes on in Azikh (Vorvan) cave of Nagorno Karabakh” was published on August 30, 2003 at the Internet site of the Arminfo news agency. The article reads that Armenian archeologists together with paleontologists from England, Ireland and Spain are holding digs in Azikh cave situated in the currently occupied ancient Azerbaijani land by Armenia, in Nagorno Karabakh - in the territory of Hajavand (former Gadrut) region.

As a result of archeological research carried out in Azerbaijan, there were discovered remains of rich material culture. These findings proved scientifically that ancient people lived in the territory of Azerbaijan 1,5 million years ago.

In 1960, scientists headed by an outstanding archeologist Mamedali Huseynov discovered world-known Azikh and Taglar camps in the territories of Guruchai and Kandalanchai territories of Azerbaijan. During the digs in Azikh cave, they discovered thousands of implements related to different stages of Paleolithic, bones of animals, places of primitive camps, remains of ancient fire, lower chin of primitive man and others.

Everything in complex was researched by Azerbaijani scientists and commented in details at the international scientific conferences. Findings in Azikh were displayed at the exhibition “First settlers of Europe” in the Paris museum of man between 1981 and 1982 and there was published an article about this camp in Paris. For recent 40 years, Azerbaijani scientists have published over 10 monographs and 200 scientific articles about Azikh camp.

International scientific public highly appraises archeological and research work carried out by Azerbaijani scientists in Azikh. French, Italian, German, Spanish, Russian, American and other scientists having visited Baku for recent 40 years, were being acquainted with remains of material culture found in Azikh and underlined high professionalism of Azeri scientists’ research.

It should be remarked that the research of findings of remains of material culture in Paleolithic camps in the territory of Azerbaijan was internationally acknowledged long ago. All these are of great scientific importance for study of the history of mankind civilization. Leading by this fact, French, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Hollandaise, Georgia, and Azerbaijani scientists prepared a program INTAS-2000 and started its implementation.

According to this program, 32 famous European scientists were dealing with a research ogf remains of material culture found in Azikh and Taglar as well as in Gazmin camps of Paleolithic in Azerbaijan between September 7 and October 1, 2002. They pointed out that these findings were of exclusive scientific important for world archeological science. Within 2001 and 2003, the head of the Institute of archeology and ethnography of the National Academy of Sciences Asadulla Jafarov made reports in France and the Institute of Paleontology of man in the European center of archeological researches on remains of material culture, discovered in camps of Paleolithic in Azerbaijan.

In the report, he commented on remains of material culture found in Azikh, and underlined that the chin of primitive man is the most ancient pale-anthropological finding in the Caucasus and Middle East.

However, despite of all scientific achievements of Azerbaijani archeologists, some Armenian scientists are trying to forge the history of Azikh camp. Sh. Mkrtchyan in his book under the title “Historical and architectural monuments of Nagorno Karabakh” published in 1998 writes, as if a statue of a women were discovered in Azikh camp, related to Acheulian culture and her dress reminds the costume of modern Armenian women.

Putting forward this ridiculous idea, Mkrtchyan is trying to search the history of Armenian people in Acheulian period. Whereas, there is no status in Azikh camp reminding a woman. There are stalagmitic and stalactic columns appeared 2 million years ago naturally.

This article at Internet site of Arminfo consists of fully forged, absurd and far from scientific thoughts. It points out as if paleontologists were holding archeological dig in Azikh cave, whereas digs are being held by archeologists and paleontologists may just be present during this process. The announcement reads that the remain of the lower chin found in 1968 by Mamedali Huseynov in Azikh cave and kept in Baku is of 50-100 thousand years of age. This is another absurd idea. Azerbaijani scientists proved that it is related to the period of 350-400 thousand year old, and this history has already found its confirmation at international scientific conferences.

Armenian state that during the present digs in Azikh camp, there were discovered bones of a bear, counting 300 thousand years. Groundless thought as the age of bones of caves bears, Mercator rhinos, primitive ox, and other animals kept in Baku and found science-research works in Azikh camp count 600 years of age.

Armenian scientists are permanently trying to arrogate to them historical and architectural monuments situated in the territory of the upper part of Karabakh. The aim of this tale is in stating on initial belonging of this territory to Armenians, However, historical sources state that Karabakh is an ancient land of Azerbaijan and Armenians were settled there in 1828, after the Turkmenchai Treaty signed between Iran and Russia, which in fact fixed occupation of the northern part of Azerbaijan by Russia.

Only in 1828-1830, the tsar Russia, stuck to interests of its colony policy, re-settled to Caucasus over 120 thousand of representatives of Armenian population from Turkey, Iran majority of which settled in Karabakh. Historical truth is in the fact that Armenians re-settled from Maragi to Nagorno Karabakh, erected an obelisk in the former village of Maragashen in 1978 on 150th anniversary in this region.

In concern with, we state that foreign archeological digs were held, in particular, in the occupied territory of our republic without a permission of the Republic of Azerbaijan is violation of the laws of the Republic of Azerbaijan as well as norms of international law.

According to Article 4 of the Convention on preservation of cultural values during armed conflict (May 14, 1954), the states obligate to prohibit actions related to misappropriation, or illegal ownership in any of the forms of cultural values in their territory and territories of other states as well as vandalism against the above-mentioned values, to cease and if necessary to extirpate them.

According to the other item of the Convention, the states should restrict from repressive actions directed against cultural values of states.

It should be remarked that unauthorized attraction of organs of other states without its permission, a group of foreigners illegally crossed the territory of a country, archeological digs without providing of the related control contradicts the norms of international law and is considered as unacceptable.

Representation of cultural values in any form with usage of the fact of occupation, explanations according to special interest and a search to destruct it from the real essence and meaning should be appraised as act of repression and to be condemned by the international law. That is why, uncontrolled archeological dig of the archeologists of the Republic of Armenia and attracted foreign scientists to work at ancient monuments of world significance in the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan is to be appraised as violation of international norms, as crime aimed at provocation against human culture and all responsibility for it is carried by the Armenian party.

Baku, September 29, 2003

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