Azerbaijan is continuing vandalism

On September 2, 2022, the Armenian media spread a video showing an Azerbaijani man in civilian clothes knocking down a khachkar installed by the road bearing an engraved name Kamo. After dropping the khachkar on the ground, he turns it over with his hands and throws it back, breaking it into several pieces. After having this done, the man exclaims that Karabakh is Azerbaijan, clenches his fist and raises it up.

Khachkar was new and, due to the inscription, it was installed in memory of Kamo. It was fenced with an iron chain. A small vase with flowers (most likely artificial) was placed in front of the khachkar. The Azerbaijani stomps them with his foot, then throws those aside.

Unfortunately, it is not clear from the video where it was made and when. It gives the impression that a truck stopped at the monument, and its driver (or passenger) got out specifically to destroy it. It is quite obvious that such a khachkar, especially in good condition and with a vase of flowers standing in front of it, would hardly have remained unharmed in the occupied territories of Artsakh. And according to the video the truck was on the roadside or somewhere close to it.

Our response

According to the 4th article of the 1954 Hague Convention "On the Protection of Cultural Heritage in Time of Armed Conflicts" the parties are obliged to respect cultural property situated within their own territory as well as within the territory of other parties. It is forbidden to commit acts of hostility, vandalism, robbery, harm and destruction towards these values.

According to the First Protocol of The 1954 Hague Convention, appropriation of cultural or spiritual values ​​in the occupied territory is prohibited. The Second Protocol of 1999 of the Hague Convention reaffirms these requirements and, according to the 15th article defines the mentioned actions as an international crime.

Destruction and appropriation of cultural property are prohibited by the Geneva Convention of August 12, 1949 for the Protection of War Victims, on the Laws and Customs of War, by four International conventions and protocols, and the relevant UN resolutions and treaties on the protection of human rights.