Read daily news summary for February 14 here.
Armenian citizen demanded nude photos from female relatives of missing servicemen
The National Security Service of Armenia reported that an Armenian citizen, registered on Facebook with an Azerbaijani name "Aziz Muradov," got in touch with the female relatives of the soldiers who went missing during the 44-day war. Introducing himself as an Azerbaijani he provided false information about the whereabouts of the missing person and in return demanded nude photos/ videos from them, otherwise threatened to kill or use violence to their captive relatives.
During the preliminary investigation, about a dozen victims were clarified, among those was a minor. The man has been arrested by the NSS of Armenia and has given testimonies. The described criminal acts are classified as particularly serious crimes, which are punishable by ten to twelve years in prison.
Armenian Ombudsman posts a video of showing Azerbaijanis firing weapons towards Syunik
Armenian Human Rights Defender Arman Tatoyan posted a video on his Facebook account showing Azerbaijani servicemen firing small and large-caliber weapons in the immediate vicinity of Armenia’s Syunik villages.
“This video was recorded 2 days ago, at different times of the day, in the middle of Agarak and Yeghvard villages of Kapan community; the footage was captured by our perimeter guards at the lines of contact,” clarified Tatoyan.
The Ombudsman reported that he periodically receives alerts about the anger and the concerns of residents of Kapan villages over the discharging of firearms by the Azerbaijani military on a regular basis.
All of these once again confirm that in the immediate vicinity of Syunik communities, and on the roads connecting those communities, there should not be any Azerbaijani military forces. The presence of these forces seriously endangers the rights of Armenian civilians, disturbs their peace and peaceful life.
Highlights from the interview of the Third president of Armenia
The extended interview conducted with Serzh Sarkissian was aired today on ArmNews TV. “I have never been one of those who were telling they would not give up a piece of land, neither during our successes in the early 90s, nor during the 2000s. And from the very first days, when I was already the president, I was telling in different formats that I see the solution of this issue only through mutual concessions,” Sarkissian claimed.
He also said that they were never negotiating “what we will give away, we were always negotiating what we will gain”. “But the negotiations for these people were the issue of giving or not giving, what is nonsense, nonsense which is typical for this kind of people in some sense. Our desire and our red line was that Nagorno Karabakh will never be a part of Azerbaijan. It was our red line, and we were defending this line up to 23 April 2018,” Serzh Sarkissian said.
Other news from Armenia and Artsakh
- Armenian Foreign Minister Ara Aivazian will pay a working visit to Russia on Wednesday, February 17, the Armenian Foreign Ministry reports. During his trip, Aivazian will meet his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in Moscow.
- Anna Naghdalyan, spokesperson of the MFA Armenia answered to the question of ARMENPRESS, refuting the announcement of the Azerbaijani president Ilham Aliyev as if in the joint declaration there is special provision about creating a corridor linking Nakhichevan with Azerbaijan. “The 9th point of the November 9 trilateral declaration is about the unblocking of all regional infrastructures and this is the approach of Armenia for the future regional stability and cooperation. The mentioned point does not contain any idea of creating a corridor. Any road or communication passing through the territory of Armenia has always been and will be exclusively under the jurisdiction and sovereignty of Armenia,” Naghdalyan said.
- As reported last week, Armenian President Armen Sargsyan has returned to Yerevan from London. Sarkissian had travelled to England to spend New Years with family members and was later diagnosed with Covid-19. He was hospitalized in London after developing double pneumonia.
- New Artsakh Foreign Minister Babayan declared the Artsakh Republic must remain a geopolitical actor. “This is not only the key task for foreign policy but for the state-building process,” Babayan said.
- War participants held protests near the Armenian Defense Ministry, demanding to receive their military cards as they participated in the Artsakh war back in autumn.
- Meanwhile a large protest is promised by the candidate of the opposition for Prime Minister of Armenia. Vazgen Manukyan told reporters today, that “the police won’t use force because the rally on February 20 will be so large that there won’t be enough police troops.”
- The Seismic protection service of the Ministry of Emergency Situations of Armenia recorded a 2.3 magnitude earthquake in the depth of 10 km on February 15 at 18:21 local time 17 km south from Yerevan. Authorities are denying the online reports which claim that a major earthquake is going to hit Armenia.
- Crime in Yerevan decreased by 7.1% in 2020 when compared to 2019, Yerevan Prosecutor Sevak Hovhannisyan presented a recap of last year’s crime figures. Cases of home burglary in Yerevan in 2020 decreased by 31.3%. The decrease was explained by the fact that more people stayed home last year due to the coronavirus outbreak. In addition, 30% more apartment buildings were equipped with outside locks requiring a password for entrance.