Hikmet Hajiyev: Azerbaijan faces significant mine contamination issue

    POLITICS  19 June 2024 - 13:41

    Hikmet Hajiyev, Assistant to the President of Azerbaijan and Head of the Foreign Policy Department of the Presidential Administration, highlighted Azerbaijan's severe mine contamination issue, labelling it as one of the most affected countries globally.
     
    Report notes that while speaking to journalists, Hajiyev criticized Armenia's ineffective maps of minefields, which failed to accurately reflect the actual locations of mines.

    He emphasized that Armenia extensively deployed mines not only for military purposes but also to hinder Azerbaijan's post-war reconstruction and development efforts, causing substantial delays and endangering civilian lives.

    Despite the challenges, Hajiyev reaffirmed Azerbaijan's steadfast commitment to demining its territories, acknowledging the demanding nature of the process.

    Azerbaijan, both before the 2020 44-day war and during the post-conflict period, has repeatedly demanded Armenia to submit landmine maps.

    The accuracy of landmine maps, the existence of which was denied by Armenia following the signing of the Trilateral Statement dated November 10, 2020, but later was submitted as a result of international pressure, is only 25 per cent. Although these maps show that only 400 thousand landmines were reportedly deployed in our territories, the actual number of landmines surpasses one million.

    More than 55 per cent of landmine explosions in recent years occurred in locations outside the areas where maps were provided by Armenia.

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