Soldier of the Armenia Army near Martuni town (Nagorno-Karabakh). Photo: REUTERS/Stuff

18 January 2019, 19:08

Armenian authorities admit they cannot return prisoners from Azerbaijan

Today, one resident of Nagorno-Karabakh and two residents of Armenia are still being kept in Azerbaijani prisons. Armenia has no arguments to force Azerbaijan to return prisoners, notes MP Naira Zograbyan.

The issue on the return of prisoners was raised at a session of the Armenian parliament held on January 17. Naira Zograbyan, an MP from the "Prosperous Armenia" faction, recalled the resonant situation with Armenian resident Karen Gazaryan. The MP has noted that "the state does not have any serious arguments to force Azerbaijan to return a prisoner."

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on November 17-19, 2018, residents of Armenia held three protest actions, demanding to return home Karen Kazaryan, a resident of the village of Berdavan of the Tavush Region, who was captured by Azerbaijan in July 2018.

Naira Zograbyan has noted there is a discrepancy in data on the people went missing since 1991. "According to the Ministry of Defence (MoD) for Armenia, about 320 people disappeared from the Armenian side. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) refers to a figure of about 400 people, while according to the NGO 'Against Legal Abuse', the number of disappeared people amounts up to 900 people," states the MP.

The Armenian MoD has stated that its officials are not involved in the return of prisoners. "There is a demand from the ICRC that the law enforcement bodies should not deal with the problem of prisoners," the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent was told by Artsrun Ovannisyan, the press secretary for the Armenian MoD.

According to the ICRC Yerevan delegation, three Armenian citizens are being kept in custody in Azerbaijan, and three Azerbaijani citizens are being kept as prisoners in Nagorno-Karabakh, while in Armenia, there are no persons detained in connection with the conflict.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on January 18, 2019 at 11:56 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Tigran Petrosyan; Source: CK correspondent

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