Baku, April 13, AZERTAC
A TV program on landmines planted by Armenia in the liberated territories of Azerbaijan was aired as part of the show “The Contreras Report” by the well-known American journalist Raoul Lowery Contreras.
It should be noted that Contreras has authored books titled “Murder in the Mountains: War Crime in Khojaly and the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict” and “The Armenian Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy”, both published in California. He also published many articles on Azerbaijan and the region.
In the program, the journalist talks about devastating effects of landmines and states that the majority of victims are usually civilians. He notes that anti-personnel mines are prohibited under the relevant international convention, and that today there are about 110 million landmines lodged in 64 countries around the world.
Talking about Azerbaijan’s Patriotic war in 2020, Raoul Contreras mentions that as a result of the war, Azerbaijan liberated its territories from Armenia’s 30 years long occupation. He highlights that during the occupation, as well as the last war and while withdrawing its troops after the joint statement of November 10, Armenia has planted hundreds of thousands of landmines in the territories of Azerbaijan subjected to military occupation. Moreover, Contreras stresses that during Armenia’s occupation, almost all towns and villages, including houses of Azerbaijani civilians in the affected territories have been looted and destroyed.
Raoul Contreras underlines that landmines in Azerbaijan’s liberated territories impede the reconstruction efforts and create a serious problem for 800 thousand Azerbaijani civilians, who were forced to leave their ancestral lands as a result of Armenian occupation in the early 1990s, to return to their homes. He notes that a large part of Azerbaijan’s liberated territories has been contaminated by landmines, and that the demining process requires massive amounts of funds, large number of specialists and time. He states that Armenia, seriously violating international humanitarian law, refuses to provide the maps of minefields to this day. Contreras further mentions that since the joint statement of November 10, 20 Azerbaijani citizens, including 14 civilians have been killed, and 85 Azerbaijanis, including 16 civilians have been seriously injured as a result of mine explosions.
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