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Motion for a resolution - B9-0147/2022Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on the Destruction of cultural heritage in Nagorno-Karabakh

8.3.2022 - (2022/2582(RSP))

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 144 of the Rules of Procedure

Viola Von Cramon‑Taubadel, Francisco Guerreiro, Ignazio Corrao, Sarah Wiener, Hannah Neumann, Bronis Ropė, Heidi Hautala, Michèle Rivasi, Reinhard Bütikofer
on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B9-0146/2022

NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.
Procedure : 2022/2582(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on the Destruction of cultural heritage in Nagorno-Karabakh


The European Parliament,

 having regard to its previous resolutions on Armenia and Azerbaijan,


 having regard to the Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict,


 having regard to the order in the context of the application of the international convention on the elimination of all forms of racial discrimination (Armenia v. Azerbaijan) request for the indication of provisional measures of the International Court of Justice,


 having regard to the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs’ 11 November 2021 statement reiterating importance of protecting historic and cultural sites in the region,


 having regard to Rules 144 of its Rules of Procedure,

  1. Whereas the EU is strongly committed to protect cultural heritage worldwide as a driver for peace and security;


  1. Whereas the Council recognised the key role of cultural heritage in promoting peace, democracy and sustainable development[1];


  1. Whereas in his Declaration on behalf of the European Union on Nagorno-Karabakh of 19 November 2020, the High Representative underlined the importance of preserving and restoring the cultural and religious heritage in and around Nagorno-Karabakh;


  1. Whereas the destruction of cultural heritage sites, artefacts and objects contributes to the escalation of hostilities, mutual hatred and racial prejudice between and within any societies;


  1. Whereas cultural and religious sites left behind by Azerbaijani IDPs in the region were destroyed, partially destroyed, neglected, desecrated by using them as cattle sheds, modified to remove cultural traces, or disassembled for building materials after the first Nagorno-Karabakh war;


  1. Whereas numerous religious sites have been attacked during the second Nagorno-Karabakh war by Azerbaijani state forces, such as the Holy Mother of God church in Jabrail region and the Holy Saviour Cathedral in Shusha/Shushi;


  1. Whereas under Heydar Aliyev and later his son Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijan is thought to have erased up to 100 Armenian churches, thousands of cross-stones (Khachkar), dozens of thousands of tombstones, and other objects of cultural heritage in Azerbaijan’s Nakhichevan Autonomous Republic, which is indicative of the potential fate of Armenian cultural heritage in Nagorno-Karabakh region too; whereas existence of Armenian cultural sites in Nakhichevan region is denied by Azerbaijani authorities;


  1. Whereas according to Resolution 2347 (2017) of the UN Security Council, unlawful attacks against sites and buildings dedicated to religion, education, art, science or charitable purposes, as well as historic monuments may constitute a war crime and perpetrators of such attacks must be brought to justice;


  1. Strongly condemns the destruction of cultural heritage in Nagorno-Karabakh;


  1. Calls on the UNESCO to assess fully the state of the cultural heritage in Nagorno-Karabakh in the framework of the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, and to follow up with the appropriate recommendations to all parties; calls on the EU to provide adequate support;


  1. Calls on Armenia and Azerbaijan to cooperate fully with international investigations and live up to their obligations pursuant to the aforementioned 1954 Hague convention;


  1. Calls on Azerbaijan to cooperate fully with the UNESCO to provide unhindered access to a fact-finding mission;


  1. Calls on Azerbaijan to protect the Armenian cultural heritage in and around Nagorno-Karabakh, fully implementing the provisional decision of ICJ[2], in particular by refraining from suppressing the Armenian language, destroying Armenian cultural heritage or otherwise eliminating the existence of the historical Armenian cultural presence or inhibiting Armenians’ access and enjoyment thereof” and by “restoring or returning any Armenian cultural and religious buildings and sites, artefacts or objects”;


  1. Calls on the governments of Azerbaijan and Armenia, with the support of the international community, to ensure effective investigations of all allegations of violations of international law, including regarding the protection of cultural heritage and attacks such as on the Holy Saviour Cathedral in Shusha/Shushi on 8 October 2020;


  1. Urges the Armenian and particularly Azerbaijani governments to stop propaganda of hate and racial prejudice through textbooks, social media and, in case of Azerbaijan, through the so-called Military Trophy Park and work towards rebuilding trust among the two societies and respect to each other’s culture; calls for renewed efforts to build confidence between both countries and make progress towards sustainable peace;


  1. Calls upon the EU and its Member States to exert pressure on both governments in view of  the establishment of an international human rights monitoring mission to address ongoing human rights violations suffered by civilians on both sides of the of the front lines;


  1. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the Vice‑President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, as well as of Armenia and of Azerbaijan.


Last updated: 8 March 2022
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