The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe discussed and approved the draft resolution on “National sovereignty and statehood in contemporary international law: the need for clarification.”

Members of the Armenian delegation consider that the resolution includes a number of controversial provisions. They presented more than 10 proposals, which will help eliminate the controversies. However, only three of the proposals were accepted. All members of the Armenian delegation voted against the bill.

The Assembly notes in the Resolution that “even if international law were to recognize a right of national or ethnic minorities or even, in some cases, national majorities to self-determination, such a right would not give rise to an automatic right to secession.”

The bill was proposed by German MP Marina Schuster. Member of the Armenian delegation Naira Zohrabyan says some of the provisions of the document are controversial. Referring to the UN Charter, Naira Zohrabyan noted in her speech that “the right of peoples and nations to self-determination is a prerequisite for enjoying all basic human rights and freedoms.” That means that the right to self-determination is one of the most important ones, and the denial of it is a human right violation, therefore also a violation of international law. “The bill is rather controversial and questions an important norm of international law like the right of peoples to self-determination,” she said.

The Armenian delegate says the German MP was not ready to give a full answer to any question.

”If we speak in the language of law, this resolution has nothing to do with us. Every word and notion in such resolutions should be well-thought in order not to create legal controversies. Unfortunately, this document was a serious regress from that point of view. I think that specialists of international law will not be late to react to this bill. This was a blow to PACE itself,” Head of the Armenian delegation David Harutyunynan said.

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