The Ministry of Defense of Armenia has released a clarification regarding Human Rights Defender Arman Tatoyan’s statement according to which representatives of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces, who have infiltrated into certain sections of Gegharkunik Province, are carrying out fortification and other works in the mentioned territories.
The clarification reads as follows: “On October 18, the Human Rights Defender of Armenia made a statement in which he touched upon the fortification and other works that are being carried out by representatives of the Armed Forces of Azerbaijan in certain sections of Gegharkunik Province of Armenia into which they infiltrated in May 2021.
The mentioned statement contains several inaccuracies, as well as claims that don’t correspond to reality.
In particular, the statement states that “the Azerbaijani Armed Forces that infiltrated into Gegharkunik Province of Armenia have constructed large shelters, accumulated a large quantity of firewood and concreted the roads leading to their military posts. Their activity has markedly increased recently. What’s more, they continue to build new roads and have increased the number of servicemen and armaments. They are constantly and actively carrying out fortification and engineering works at the military posts.” These claims are clearly exaggerated since the units of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces aren’t actively carrying out engineering works, haven’t built large shelters or new roads, and what’s more, their attempts to carry out such works are successfully prevented by the units of the Armed Forces of Armenia. As far as the claim about the increase of the number of Azerbaijani servicemen and armaments is concerned, we deem it necessary to mention that all the movements of the Azerbaijani servicemen are overseen by the units of the Armenian Armed Forces, and no such process has been recorded recently.
We call on checking the factual data with the Ministry of Defense when making such comments on topics that are sensitive for the Armenian public, and the Ministry of Defense is ready for the closest cooperation with the Office of the Human Rights Defender.”