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Armen Gevorgyan, member of the Armenian Delegation to PACE, Armenian NA deputy from 'Armenia' bloc said his compatriots refuse to believe that the promise of access to Caspian Sea gas and oil can cloud the minds of our organization members. His remarks came during the session of the Commission on Social Affairs, Health Care and Sustainable Development of the Parliamentary Association of the Council of Europe on Friday in Izmir, Turkey.

He particularly said:

"Madam Chairman,

Dear Committee Members,

I would like to inform the members of the Committee about the recent developments in our region.

At midnight on September 13 Azerbaijan unprovoked and unjustified armed invasion into the territory of Armenia. As a result of that massive aggression, which lasted for days, more than 200 Armenian servicemen died, some of whom are being held captive. Nearly 20 more are being held captive. Three female soldiers were not only killed, but their bodies were also desecrated in a manner typical of ISIS militants. The nature of the Jermuk resort, which is famous for its healing mineral waters, has been severely damaged.

Azerbaijan has seized new territories in Armenia, in addition to those occupied since May 2021.

This war has disrupted ongoing negotiations mediated by Russia, the European Union and the United States. Virtually all members of the UN Security Council on September 15 severely criticized this encroachment on peace and called for a return to negotiations. Some members, without even masquerading in diplomatic language, clearly pointed to the aggressor state. The UNSC discussion confirms that the Karabakh conflict has not been resolved, as the Azerbaijani authorities are trying to portray it.

Colleagues,

In this organization we are still facing a difficult choice. One member state periodically attacks another member state, while the Council of Europe fails to take active steps. This organization, unlike many others, prefers to limit itself to vague and obscure statements, avoids objective assessments and sanctions against the offending state.

The silence of our organization and our voluntary isolation, in fact, further encourages aggression by states such as Azerbaijan, which is in no way punished for its aggression against its neighbor and continues to confirm its own fabrications.

My compatriots refuse to believe that the promise of access to Caspian Sea gas and oil can cloud the minds of our members. We do not want to see the global programs of Turkic states to physically unite parts of their states by occupying or annexing the sovereign territory of Armenia and at the cost of the lives of hundreds of innocent citizens.

In fact, we are witnessing double standards and geopolitics. How else can we explain the fact that even wars provoke different attitudes and reactions in our organization? Objectively, there cannot be good and bad, right and wrong wars. Nevertheless, we often witness this in our decisions and actions.

Dear Commissioners,

a few days ago, September 21 was Armenia's Independence Day. Although the Armenians of Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh have recently struggled to overcome truly enormous challenges, our nation will continue to struggle and live with dignity. We have always built and created, no matter where we live - in our homeland or scattered around the world.

This also applies to Turkey today, a large part of whose heritage has Armenian roots or Armenian traces, be it the Hagia Sophia Cathedral or the Dolmabahçe Palace in Istanbul.

As well as in Baku, where Armenians built and created many things, in Izmir, where the development of the rich Armenian cultural and historical heritage was interrupted in 1922. By the way, many famous political, state and public figures of Armenian origin from different countries come from ancient Smyrna. Among them are the late French Prime Minister Edouard Balladur, Egypt's first Prime Minister Nubar Pasha, the famous American businessman and philanthropist, Armenia's national hero Alec Manoogian and others.

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