Letter from Civil Society organizations in Armenia to NATO
On 14 October 2020, a number of civil society organizations had addressed James Appathurai, NATO Secretary General’s Special Representative for the Caucasus and Central Asia, as well as Despina Afentouli, NATO Brussels Caucasus officer, and Rosaria Puglisi, Head of NATO Liaison Office in Georgia, and the NATO Member States’ embassies in Armenia, with an appeal to prevent actions aimed at military escalation of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict by Turkey, a member state of NATO.
Despite the reports of the crimes and violations, NATO or any of its member states have to date failed to respond to the letter of the non-governmental organizations; the position of the Alliance on the actions of its member Turkey has not been presented.
We consider that NATO, as a military-political alliance fighting against international terrorism, is obligated to take effective measures to prevent future terrorist acts and the deployment of terrorist groups in the South Caucasus or the wider region.
According to the North Atlantic Treaty, the Parties undertake, as set forth in the Charter of the United Nations, to settle any international dispute in which they may be involved by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security and justice are not endangered, and to refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force in any manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations. Armenia is NATO’s active partner under Partnership for Peace Programme, Armenia cooperates with NATO in the defence sphere, in Afghanistan and Kosovo and on political and security issues, democratic standards, rule of law, and the fight against corruption. In this light, military operations by a NATO Ally towards a NATO Partner country, as well as of a NATO Partner (Azerbaijan) towards another NATO partner (Armenia) undermine the spirit of NATO Partnership for Peace and NATOs stance on encouraging peaceful resolution of Nagorno Karabakh conflict under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group.
Civil society hereby expresses concern over the fact that NATO and its Member States have failed to take any measures to prevent or stop Turkey, their ally and a NATO member state, from introducing terrorists into the South Caucasus and unfolding terrorist activities. This may be viewed as inaction and indifference towards respecting the fundamental principles of the North Atlantic Alliance.
We expect that NATO Member States will, nevertheless, take the required measures, including specific and genuine steps in line with the concerns expressed over the continuing violations of the ceasefire and the ensuing casualties during the meeting held in Brussels between
Jens Stoltenberg, the Secretary General of NATO, and Armen Sargsyan, the President of the Republic of Armenia.
Therefore, we hereby once again call upon the NATO Member States that are genuinely interested in settling the Nagorno Karabakh conflict by peaceful means and without use of force, in accordance with the North Atlantic Treaty, to put the following issues to an urgent discussion in the agenda of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly:
- Preventing the direct or indirect involvement of Turkey, a NATO member state, in the Nagorno Karabakh conflict;
- Precluding Turkey from recruiting terrorists and engaging them in the hostilities against Nagorno Karabakh; and
- Conducting an impartial investigation into the war crimes in the hostilities waged with Turkey’s support and taking effective steps to prevent such crimes from occurring.
Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly Vanadzor Office
Transparency International Anti-Corruption Center
Asparez Club of Journalists
Protection of Rights without Borders
Open Society Foundations – Armenia
Legal Development and Protection Foundation
Analytical Centre on Globalization and Regional Cooperation (ACGRC)
Public Journalism Club
Center for Legal Initiatives NGO
Armenian United Nations Association
Committee to Protect Freedom of Expression
Communities Finance Officers Association
Peace Dialogue NGO
New Generation Humanitarian NGO
“Agate” Rights Defense Center for Women with Disabilities NGO
Center for Rights Development NGO
Centre for Policy Studies
“Pink” human rights defender NGO
Martuni Women’s Community Council NGO
Armenian Psycho-Oncology Association
Country Water Partnership NGO
Centre for Community Mobilization and Support NGO
“Free Citizen” Civic Initiatives Support Center NGO
Queer sista platform NGO
Society Without Violence NGO
Compatriotic Union of ”Artsvabuyn Zeytun” ngo
Sexual Assault Crisis Center NGO
AEGEE-Yerevan/European Students’ Forum
Coalition to Stop Violence against Women
Real World Real People NGO
“Women’s Forum” NGO
Helsinki Committee of Armenia
Urban Foundation for Sustainable Development
Consumers Support Center NGO
‘Shogher Union” Social-Educatinal NGO
“Caucasus” Sociological Research Centre NGO
World Armenian Youth Network – WostAYN
Social and Youth Workers
Regional Development and Research Center NGO
B2S Armenian Social Entrepreneurship Association NGO
Federation of Youth Clubs of Armenia
Human rights power NGO
Human Rights House Yerevan
Human Rights Research Center