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June 16
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Freedom House has issued a statement in response to reports of abuse of Armenian prisoners of war (POWs) and civilian captives detained by Azerbaijan after their recent armed conflict, Freedom House reported. The statement reads as follows:

“We are deeply concerned by the reports of dehumanizing treatment and abuse, including torture, of Armenians captured and detained by Azerbaijan after the recent armed conflict,” said Marc Behrendt, director of Europe and Eurasia programs at Freedom House. “We urge the Azerbaijani authorities to fully cooperate with the efforts of the European Court of Human Rights to investigate the validity of reports of dehumanizing treatment of Armenian detainees regardless of their status and ensure those still in custody are provided with all protections required under international human rights and humanitarian law, including freedom from torture and inhuman treatment, and that details of their repatriation are provided. As a signatory of the European Convention on Human Rights, Azerbaijan is obligated to fully cooperate with the court and provide all requested information to facilitate a transparent investigation of these serious issues.”

Also, it is noted that, “The fate of nearly 200 Armenians reportedly in Azerbaijani custody remains unclear amid reports of abuse and humiliation, months after their return was mandated in a cease-fire ending the two countries’ armed conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh [(Artsakh)].”

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