by Marianna Mkrtchyan
Azerbaijan continues to grossly breach the ceasefire, neglecting the calls of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs for peaceful resolution of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict, says Armenian Parliament Vice Speaker Eduard Sharmazanov.
"The murder of the NKR Defense Army soldier Garnik Torosyan by an Azerbaijani sniper on 24 March is an evidence of this. Actually, all this is a result of the Fascist and anti-Armenian policy of the Azerbaijani authorities. And that country calls its public tolerant," Sharmazanov said. He recalled that after the World War II, German Nazis called their movement as Christian movement.
He touched upon the tragic incidents in Kessab. "President of Armenia said that the third in succession deportation of Armenians from Kessab is a serious challenge to the mechanisms of protection of the national minorities in the 21st century. It is beyond any doubt that the armed attack on Kessab is an open threat to peace and stability in the Middle East. Those attacks is an alarm for the UN structures engaged in human rights protection," Sharmazanov said.
To recall, the Armenian populated villages of Kessab, Syria were the target of three days of brutal cross-border attacks from Turkey by al-Qaeda affiliated armed bands, which have cost 80 lives and forced the civilian population of the area to flee to neighboring hills, with many seeking safe-haven in the nearby cities of Latakia and Basit. The attack are supported by Turkey. Some bands consist mainly of Turks. On March 23, Turkey said its fighter jets shot down a Syrian jet after it crossed into Turkish airspace. Syria denied that its jet had violated Turkish airspace and, according to Agence France-Presse, accused Turkey of "a flagrant act of aggression that is evidence of Erdogan's support for terrorist groups." The MIG-23 jets were reportedly flying a support mission to assist ground forces repelling extremist fighters which had infiltrated from Turkey into Kessab. President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan and Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia Aram II urged the Syrian authorities and the world community to protect Kessab and give an adequate assessment of the situation.
The vice speaker also touched upon the domestic political situation in Armenia saying that the public is actively involved in the ongoing processes and the Republican Party welcomes any political pluralism within the law. Unfortunately, he said, some political figures take slander and personal affronts as pluralism.