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YEREVAN. – Armenian Deputy Speaker Edward Sharmazanov responded to Azerbaijani administration international affairs department head Novruz Mamedov, who said that Azerbaijan is ready to grant Nagorno-Karabakh the highest status of autonomy, at the same time called Armenia an occupant state.

“I am always surprised at how far the Azerbaijani officials may go. First of all, no state is authorized to grant an autonomy status to another state, as there are international norms and the UN charter. According to it, self-determination is one of the UN goals, while territorial integrity is merely a principle, hence, principles serve for realization of the goals. Secondly, Artsakh [Nagorno-Karabakh] according to the USSR and international norms has proclaimed its independence and confirmed it via referendum by its people. Moreover, Artsakh has never been a part of independent Azerbaijan. And third, how can Azerbaijan speak about granting autonomy to Artsakh, while it is not able to tolerate cultural [Armenian] monuments in Nor Jugha and eliminated it, executing cultural genocide. Undoubtedly Azerbaijan is an aggressor,” Sharmazanov concluded.

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