in Russian – http://crossroadorg.info/estival-16-8-2023/
The statement by Deputy Permanent Representative of France to the UN Mrs Nathalie Estival-Broadhurst on August 16,2023 at Security Council meeting.
Source of the text – here.
Video from 14:25 at https://media.un.org/ru/asset/k14/k1498sf9lh
Thank you Madam President, and thank you also to the representative of OCHA for her briefing.
I welcome the presence here today of the Foreign Minister of Armenia.
I would like to highlight three points.
Firstly, the restrictions and total blockage of traffic on the corridor linking Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh for more than eight months are now causing a humanitarian crisis.
The persistent blocking of the Latchine corridor by Azerbaijan continues to isolate the population of Nagorno-Karabakh from the rest of the world, with no legitimate reason to justify such a situation, which runs counter to the principles of international humanitarian law.
This situation, combined with the interruption of gas and electricity supplies, the drying up of water resources, the difficulties encountered by the population in gaining access to seeds, and the shortage of fuel which is hampering agricultural work, is now degenerating into a humanitarian crisis: the risk of famine and widespread shortages, including of medicines, is imminent.
France deplores the blocking of the humanitarian aid convoy dispatched last July by the Armenian authorities in an attempt to remedy this tragic situation. The restrictions and obstacles imposed on the activities of the ICRC and other humanitarian actors, in violation of international law, are not acceptable.
In view of the gravity of the humanitarian situation, France calls for the unconditional and immediate restoration of the free movement of goods, people and merchandise along the Latchine corridor, in both directions, and for a continuous supply of gas and electricity to the population.
Since our last public meeting, the International Court of Justice issued an order on February 22, 2023. This order indicated provisional measures, which are binding, and require Azerbaijan, in accordance with its obligations under the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, to “take all measures at its disposal to ensure the unimpeded movement of persons, vehicles and goods along the Latchine corridor in both directions”. In its Order of July 6, 2023, noting the precariousness of the situation between the Parties, the Court confirmed “the need for effective implementation of the measure indicated in its Order of February 22, 2023”.
As the UN Secretary-General did on August 2, France once again calls on Azerbaijan to abide by its international obligations, and to implement the provisional measures indicated by the International Court of Justice.
In light of the gravity of the situation, France welcomes the ICRC’s action on the ground, and will reinforce its support. France calls for immediate, free and unhindered access for humanitarian organizations and UN agencies to the populations concerned, and for the reopening of the Latchin corridor.
France remains fully committed to promoting a lasting and just peace in the region.
To this end, we call for a resumption of negotiations aimed at resolving all outstanding issues, including the rights and guarantees of the population of Nagorno-Karabakh. This can only be achieved through dialogue, excluding any use or threat of force.
Alongside the European Union, France will continue to contribute to efforts to promote dialogue between Armenia and Azerbaijan. It fully supports and participates in the mediation efforts led by the European Union to promote a process of normalization.
We will support the search for progress on all subjects under negotiation, including the draft peace treaty, border demarcation, humanitarian issues and the opening of communication routes. France stands ready to contribute to these objectives, in liaison with all the parties and stakeholders.
Thank you very much.