Armenia/Azerbaijan: ICRC urges that the rules of humanitarian law be respected
Geneva (ICRC) - The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is worried about the upsurge of military activity along the Armenian-Azerbaijani border and its humanitarian consequences since 13 September 2022. This activity is affecting the lives and safety of people residing in border areas and blocking their access to essential infrastructure.
"While conducting military operations, all precautionary measures must always be taken to ensure that the rules of international humanitarian law are respected. This is an obligation of parties that are signatories of the Geneva Conventions," said Martin Schüepp, ICRC director of operations. "We reiterate our commitment to assist those affected by this escalation of hostilities. We are also ready to act as a neutral intermediary, such as by visiting captured persons, if any, facilitating their return upon agreement and request of the parties, and supporting in the search and retrieval of those killed in action."
The ICRC reminds the concerned parties that they must distinguish between civilians and persons participating in hostilities. They must also do everything possible to spare civilian objects, in particular healthcare facilities and personnel. The ICRC also assesses the humanitarian situation on the ground in order to quickly respond to the urgent needs of people affected by military operations.
Note to Editors:
Since 1992, the ICRC has been present in the region in connection with the conflict. Through its delegations in Armenia and Azerbaijan, the ICRC supports communities living along the Armenian-Azerbaijani border. In addition, the ICRC works to clarify the fate of missing persons and help their families, visits detainees and acts as a neutral intermediary between the sides when requested to facilitate transfer and repatriation of released persons.
We collaborate closely with the Armenian Red Cross and the Azerbaijani Red Crescent, coordinating activities aimed at assisting people affected by the conflict across the region.