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ICJ starts hearing in Azerbaijan case against Armenia for racial discrimination

Azerbaijan accuses Armenia of violating International Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination

Selman Aksunger   | 18.10.2021
ICJ starts hearing in Azerbaijan case against Armenia for racial discrimination

THE HAGUE

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague on Monday began hearing a suit filed by Azerbaijan against Armenia for racial discrimination.

Azerbaijan accused Armenia of violating the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, to which both states are signatories.

Due to the coronavirus epidemic, the hearing was held in a "mixed format," which will continue on Tuesday. Some members of the court attended the hearing in person and others via video.

The claims that Armenia breached the international convention on the prevention of racial discrimination were presented by an Azerbaijani team led by Deputy Foreign Minister Elnur Mammadov.

Azerbaijan also requested the court to adjudicate interim measures to put an immediate end to Armenia's violations.

Last week, hearings on Armenia's claim against Azerbaijan for violating the same convention were held.

Azerbaijan-Armenia relations

Relations between the former Soviet republics of Azerbaijan and Armenia have been tense since 1991 when the Armenian military occupied Nagorno-Karabakh, also known as Upper Karabakh, a territory internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, and seven adjacent regions.

When new clashes erupted on Sept. 27 last year, the Armenian army launched attacks on civilians and Azerbaijani forces and violated several humanitarian cease-fire agreements.

The two countries signed a Russian-brokered agreement on Nov. 10, 2020 to end the fighting and work toward a comprehensive resolution.

The cease-fire was seen as a victory for Azerbaijan and a defeat for Armenia, whose armed forces withdrew in line with the agreement.

Prior to this, about 20% of Azerbaijan's territory had been under illegal occupation for nearly 30 years.

On Jan. 11 this year, the leaders of Russia, Azerbaijan, and Armenia signed a pact to develop economic ties and infrastructure to benefit the entire region. It included the establishment of a trilateral working group on Karabakh.

*Writing by Gozde Bayar

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