The Statement by the president of AzerbaijanRepublicmade at the meeting of the Heads of Member States of CIS. Ashgabat, 24 December 1993

The aggression of the Republic of Armenia against Azerbaijan lasting as long as about 6 years has brought numerous disasters to Azerbaijani people.

After the USSR collapse and achievement of independence both by Azerbaijan and Armenia the conflict has become an inter-state armed conflict.

The armed forces of the Republic of Armenia have occupied about 14 thousand of square kilometers of Azerbaijani territory. The territory about 9 thousand square kilometers is situated beyond the territory of Mountainous Garabagh. It worth to note that after having taking the whole territory of Mountainous Garabagh under their control, the Armenian armed formations continued steadily their aggressive operations, occupying Lachin, Kalbajar, Aghdam, Fuzuli, Jabrail, Gubadli, Zangilan districts, as well as a part of Gazakh district of Azerbaijan Republic, situated beyond Mountainous Garabagh. During military operations the civilians are massacred, the ethnic purge and demolition are conducted at the occupied territories.

After beginning of aggression against Azerbaijan more than 18 thousand people were killed, about 50 thousand were wounded and become invalid, 4 thousand were taken captivated, about 1 million Azerbaijanis were left without a roof over their head, more than 100 thousand of dwelling buildings, more than a thousand of economical objects, more than 600 schools and medical establishments were put into fire, looted and destroyed; hundreds of millions dollars worth private and state property, material wealth are transported from occupied territories to Armenia. All these have caused critical situation in Azerbaijan.

It is with a great sense of regret that one has to note that after Azerbaijan's becoming the full member of Commonwealth of Independent States and its joining the Agreement on Collective Security in September of 1993, the Republic of Armenia have not merely stopped its aggression but the military operations took on larger scale. Despite an agreement on cease-fire the Fuzuli, Jabrail, Gubadli and Zangilan regions of Azerbaijan were occupied by armed forces of the Republic of Armenia and shared the destiny of previously occupied Lachin, Kalbajar, Aghdam districts and a part of Gazakh district. Consequently the aggressor has moved to the state frontiers of Azerbaijan Republic with Islamic Republic of Iran, creating a dangerous conflict point and this has created a threat for becoming of this conflict to an international one.

The occupation of the regions having more than 300 thousand of inhabitants in October 2003 was met hardly by Azerbaijani people because this event happened after Azerbaijan's becoming of CIS member and its joining to the Agreement on Collective Security. Consequently, the Republic of Armenia not only invades Azerbaijan but also demonstrates the full ignorance to principles that unify our community now.

Since the Republic of Armenia is a member –state of CIS and a Contracting Party of the Agreement on Collective Security, its aggression towards another country, the full member of commonwealth as Azerbaijan is unacceptable.

The events happened recently prove the aggressive intentions of Armenia. Attempts of the armed forces of the aggressor to break on the direction towards Baylagan district deep into territories of Azerbaijan where along all road the civilians from previously occupied territories are settled, create a threat of a new, even more bloody escalation of the conflict. About intensity of operations speaks the fact, that while its offensive attempts the enemy uses tens of tanks, missiles and heavy artillery.

The Republic Armenia, ignoring the resolutions of UN Security Council, intermediary efforts of OSCE, as well as those of Russia and Kazakhstan, tries compelling us to recognize the status of Armenians of Mountainous Garabagh as party of the conflict with the purpose of concealment of the true role - the country which is carrying out the direct aggression. But In reality more than 100 thousand of Armenians living at the territory of Mountainous Garabagh, not having any significant resources are not capable to carry out the large-scale military operations against the country with a 7-million population and to occupy 20 percents of its territory. An attempt to ignore the rights of 50 thousand Azerbaijanis from the Mountainous Garabagh region of the republic, fled from Shusha, Khojali, Khojavand, Hadrud and Aghdara districts in the result of the ethnic purges is undertaken.

Unfortunately, the experience of the recent times shows that indecision, uncertainty and absolutely unacceptable balancing between interests of the aggressor and its victim are not only the aggressor appeasement but also endangers to undermine the peace all over the Caucasian region and expand the frames of the conflict beyond the CIS frontiers. All of these urge the CIS member-countries, signed the Agreement on Collective Security to be in earnest about the reasons and consequences of Armenian aggression against Azerbaijan. At the same time, it is worth to note that this conflict is related not only with our region, but with the overall CIS area.

In these purposes we offer to develop at an expert level the system of the bilateral and multilateral agreements aimed at the stabilization of the political situation in the CIS-wide space, providing in fact the following:

- Recognition and respect of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of each of our CIS member-states. As the first stage it is necessary to conclude the regional agreements on the mutual recognition of frontiers, for example, Central Asian, South Caucasian, etc.;

- Security, rights and freedom of national minorities in our states which will create a rigid barrier to separatism and militant nationalism.

Protesting against similar actions of the Republic Armenia, I address myself to the Heads of the states with the urgent request:

1. To give a political evaluation of aggression of Republic of Armenia against the Azerbaijan Republic;

2. To demand definitely the Republic of Armenia to stop military actions against the Azerbaijan Republic;

3. Require immediate withdrawal of all units of armed forces of the Republic of Armenia from the territory of the Azerbaijan Republic;

4. To demand the Republic of Armenia giving of firm political guarantees not to resume the military actions without what the safe returning of refugees and displaced persons is impossible;

5. To establish a special commission constituted of representatives of CIS member-states for definition of the property damage and estimation of criminal acts of occupants in territory of Azerbaijan.

Without the practical realization of the present prepositions the peace cannot be established, the conditions for mutually advantageous economic cooperation will not be created without which neither progress, nor democracy, and even the existence of our Commonwealth will not be possible.

We have made also amendments to the text of the Agreement on the collective security, aimed at the creation of the mechanism of emergency reaction to the current and probable situations in the future, representing danger to the security of the Commonwealth. Our firm belief is that the security of the states of Commonwealth is not only the safety of our external frontiers, but also the peace and stability in our common house.