Armenian Human Rights Defender (Ombudsman) Arman Tatoyan reacted to Security Council Secretary Armen Grigoryan’s statement on the setup of Azerbaijani checkpoints on the Goris-Kapan highway, saying that instead of legitimizing these actions, efforts should be made to remove the checkpoints.
In an interview with the Public TV Company on Wednesday, Grigoryan announced that Azerbaijani forces would set up customs checkpoints on the Goris-Kapan road starting from midnight.
Addressing the Secretary of the Security Council, Tatoyan demanded explanations from him over a number of issues.
“As the secretary of the Armenian Security Council, the official has to explain how the free and safe movement of people and goods on the Goris-Kapan road is possible in the conditions of Azerbaijani border and customs control?” the ombudsman wrote on Facebook.
Tatoyan also wondered if the Security Council Secretary realizes that these actions would lead to the restriction of Armenian citizens’ rights, including arrests, fines, criminal prosecutions, and searches by Azeri law enforcement agencies.
“How are the residents of Armenia [neighboring villages] or foreigners traveling along the Goris-Kapan road supposed to protect their rights. For example, whom should they apply to and by what procedures? the ombudsman said.
Another issue raised by Tatoyan concerns the ways to hold the Azerbaijani border and customs officers responsible for violation of rights.
He reiterated that the presence of the Azerbaijani military, law enforcement agencies, and, above all, their actions on the roads of Armenia are unlawful.
“Instead of legitimizing their presence and actions by statements, efforts should be made towards their withdrawal,” Tatoyan wrote.