The Amsterdam-based Benelux Azerbaijanis Congress (BAC) has issued a statement concerning the Armenia’s intentions to open an airport in Khojaly, the town in Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan, which is under the Armenian occupation.
According to the document, “The Benelux Azerbaijanis Congress supports the Azerbaijani government’s pledge not to guarantee a safe air corridor in Nagorno-Karabakh area.”
The BAC statement reads that with such illegal actions Armenia nullifies the peace negotiations within the OSCE Minsk Group, initiatives of the international community to bring peace and cooperation to the region and opportunities for communities' dialogue.
Benelux Azerbaijanis Congress believes that any activity in the territory of the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan is possible only after the withdrawal of Armenian troops from the occupied territories, return of the Azerbaijani people to their homes and after ensuring peaceful coexistence of the Azerbaijani and Armenian communities.
Earlier, Armenian media reported the commissioning of the airport in Khankendi, another town in Nagorno Karabakh. The action towards the commissioning of Khojaly airport in Nagorno-Karabakh is dangerous. It violates international law and harms the peaceful settlement of the conflict.
Earlier, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry urged all international companies operating in Khojaly airport to immediately stop their illegal activities in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.
"Otherwise, the Azerbaijani side will take the appropriate steps," Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry spokesman Elman Abdullayev said.
Commissioning the airport in Khankendi is an open violation of the Convention on International Civil Aviation. Azerbaijan has banned the use of the airspace of Nagorno-Karabakh region, which is under the Armenian occupation, as no one can guarantee a safe air corridor in the area, the head of the Azerbaijani Civil Aviation Administration, Arif Mammadov said earlier.
The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and the European Civil Aviation Conference (ICAC) also support the position of Azerbaijan on this issue.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 per cent of Azerbaijan since 1992, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group - Russia, France and the U.S. - are currently holding peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.