The Lemkin Institute for Genocide Prevention issued a statement condemning the 15-year prison sentence handed down to Vagif Khachatryan on November 7 by Azerbaijan.
"The Lemkin Institute exhorts the international community to persuade the regime of [Azerbaijani president] President Aliyev into promptly releasing all Armenian persons under its jurisdiction and to refrain from providing any kind of assistance that could worsen the suffering of the victims of the Artsakh [(Nagorno-Karabakh)] genocide or embolden Azerbaijan to perpetrate any unlawful act of aggression," the aforesaid statement added, in part.
Earlier we reported that Nagorno-Karabakh resident Vagif Khachatryan, 68, was sentenced to 15 years in prison by a court in Azerbaijani capital Baku.
Vagif Khachatryan, a participant in the first Nagorno-Karabakh war in the early 1990s, was abducted by the Azerbaijanis this summer while crossing the Lachin corridor into Armenia—and being accompanied by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). The Azerbaijani authorities accuse Khachatryan of committing serious crimes for participating in combat operations. Despite these obviously illegal actions by Azerbaijan, including the abducting of a person under the protection of the ICRC, Khachatryan was not only not released, but stood trial.
A total of 59 people were considered "victims" in this fabricated case, and all of them "recognized" Khachatryan and spoke about his "crimes."
Vagif Khachatryan, however, had pleaded not guilty to the charges against him, and stated that he did not participate in any crimes against Azerbaijanis.
It is noteworthy that this Armenian resident and citizen of Nagorno-Karabakh is presented by Azerbaijan as a citizen of Armenia.