Caucasus (bbabo.net), - Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan stated that it is necessary to change the content and quality of regional relations in order to establish peace. Speaking today, December 12, at the fourth global forum against the crime of genocide in Yerevan, the head of government expressed confidence that in order to build peace in the region, one must start with simple but important things.
Pashinyan believes that an important element in improving the atmosphere is the exclusion of “hatspeak” (hate speech, hate speech), both at the official and everyday levels.
According to him, the topic of preventing genocide should not become a reason for condemnation and deepening hostility between peoples. Pashinyan stated that it is necessary to put an end to the practice when in Armenia or Azerbaijan political opponents are called “Turks” and “Armenians”, respectively, in order to offend them. The prime minister noted that in Armenia some of his political opponents very often call him a "Turk". However, he does not perceive this as an insult to himself, considering, nevertheless, that this vicious practice must be stopped if there is a desire to achieve peace.
The names of ethnic groups should not be an insult, Pashinyan emphasized, in this context, further proposing a format for a regional dialogue with the participation of Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan, which could contribute to regional cooperation.
“The idea is not new and I have always supported it. But I proposed an important, fundamental formula - the Armenia-Georgia-Azerbaijan platform should be used only to exclude the “hatspeak” in our region,” he said.
At the same time, referring to the current realities in the South Caucasus, the head of government drew the attention of the forum participants to the fact that, according to him, the threat of genocide in the region remains, and it must be prevented.
“Recently, in particular, from representatives of Nagorno-Karabakh, there have been signals about the likelihood of genocide. And I believe that all of us, including the international community, should take these signals seriously,” Pashinyan said. “Today we are seeing how Azerbaijan is consistently taking steps that reinforce our fears of a planned genocide in Nagorno-Karabakh.”
The prime minister recalled that in 2021, an Azerbaijani sniper killed a civilian from Nagorno-Karabakh, who was driving a tractor and doing agricultural work.
Subsequently, Azerbaijani units penetrated into the zone of responsibility of Russian peacekeepers. The Azerbaijani Armed Forces periodically violated the peace of the civilians of Nagorno-Karabakh by means of light signals at night, and also turned on loud music and Muslim prayers, demanding the Armenian population to leave their homes, he said.
“We have great respect for Islam, the evidence of which is the Blue Mosque in the center of Yerevan, restored during the period of independence (of Armenia). But the actions of Azerbaijanis cannot be called anything other than “religious terrorism,” the prime minister said.
The fact that Azerbaijan is "preparing a genocide" of the Armenian population of Nagorno-Karabakh, Pashinyan argued last month at a meeting of the republic's government. According to him, the Azerbaijani authorities have not yet taken any steps to start a dialogue with representatives of Nagorno-Karabakh on international platforms, they have not fulfilled their respective obligations.