STEPANAKERT — Law-enforcement bodies in Nagorno-Karabakh have opened criminal proceedings in connection with an Azerbaijani sabotage group infiltration into the territory according to the information of the NKR Prosecutor General’s Office.
The Defense Ministry of Nagorno-Karabakh on Monday said two members of the group that had penetrated into the Kelbajar district last week had been captured, while others had been destroyed. It did not give a specific number.
The Prosecutor’s Office in Stepanakert identified the captured Azeris as 46-year-old Guliyev Shahbaz Jalaloghlu, a resident of Ghapanlu village of the Mirbashir region and 54-year-old citizen of Azerbaijan Dilham Askerov. It said both arrested persons had been armed.
Armenian Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian told reporters today that the Azerbaijani citizens, who illegally crossed the Karabakh border, will be prosecuted in line with the requirements of the Armenian and international law.
“Azerbaijan undertook an act of sabotage, involving a criminal group familiar with the area. They have committed a crime under our law, a criminal case has been opened and they will be persecuted in compliance with our legislature and the international norms, Seyran Ohanian said.
“The members of the neutralized sabotage group did not have any marks of distinction and had grossly violated the laws and customs of war that are defined by international law, committing cruel and inhuman acts of infringement upon civilians,” the Armenian military emphasized, adding that, if necessary, evidence could be provided to relevant international agencies.
The Armenian Defense Ministry listed a series of crimes that they are suspected of committing while in Armenian-controlled territory. Among them illegal crossing of the border, murder, attempted murder, attempts to photograph ‘specially protected areas’, and others. It said Article 4 of the Geneva Convention relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War could not be applied to the arrested Azerbaijani citizens as there is ‘irrefutable evidence’ that they were members of a ‘criminal group’ recruited by Azerbaijani authorities for the purpose of carrying out sabotage activities.