Coordinator of the Information Center for Azerbaijani Captives and Hostages, human rights defender Ahmad Shahidov attended an international human rights conference in London, UK, on 4 October. The international conference “Armed Conflicts, Peace and Human Rights”, supported by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, listened to reports on conflicts around the world, war zones, civil rights and peace initiatives.
Speaking at the panel titled “Humanitarian Consequences of Conflicts,” the Coordinator of the Information Center for Azerbaijani Captives and Hostages, human rights defender Ahmad Shahidov gave a comprehensive report on the nature of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict faced by Azerbaijan. He gave information about the Azerbaijani refugees and IDPs, as well as the captives and hostages.
Speaking about civil hostages Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev, human rights defender Ahmad Shahidov said that official Yerevan ignores international calls over the past 6 years and helds these civilians as hostage: “Azerbaijan has been in war since 1988. We have lost 20% of our total area, and this is contrary to the norms and principles of international law. One million of us are living as an IDP. Another group of people suffering from this conflict are our captives and hostages. To date, 3888 Azerbaijanis are considered captives, missing persons and hostage during the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, and their fate is unknown. In 2014, two other Azerbaijani civilians, Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev, were taken hostage by the Armenian armed forces. We have been protecting the rights of these people for 6 years and are working on their release on all international platforms. Today, official Baku is proposing to exchange the captives and hostages on the principle of “All to all”. I also ask you to support this humanitarian initiative. Because Azerbaijan is a humane and peaceful country. We do not want war, we want peace. We are for peace, based on law, justice and coexistence.”
Later, human rights defender Ahmad Shahidov answered numerous questions of the conference participants and gave detailed information on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.