Bishop of St Albans asks about conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan

On 18th November the Bishop of St Albans received written answers to questions on the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan, reports of ethnic cleansing of Armenian Christians and the use of white phosphorus:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the case for the provision of further security guarantees to assist those living in the Nagorno-Karabakh region; and what steps they are taking to monitor and assess clashes and casualties along the ‘line of contact’ in that region. [HL10014]

Baroness Sugg: The UK Government has not made an assessment on the case for further security guarantees to assist those living in the Nagorno-Karabakh region. Any such mechanism should be agreed between Armenia and Azerbaijan, under the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group. The UK Government continues to support the efforts of the OSCE Minsk Group and Minsk Group Co- Chairs in calling for immediate de-escalation and a return to the negotiating table without pre-conditions.


 The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of (1) the scale, and (2) the ferocity, of offensives in the Nagorno-Karabakh region; what representations they have received about fears of ethnic cleansing of Armenian Christians; and what plans they have to call for urgent intervention at international level in line with the UN’s Responsibility to Protect agreement. [HL10015]

Baroness Sugg: The UK Government welcomes the news that the Governments of Armenia and Azerbaijan have agreed to a ceasefire. The Minister for the European Neighbourhood has spoken to the Azerbaijani Foreign Minister four times, most recently on 13 November and spoken to the Armenian Foreign Minister three times, most recently on 28 October. The UK Government has seen no evidence that ethnic cleansing is taking place or will take place and has no plans to call for urgent intervention at the international level. The UK Government continues to support the efforts of the OSCE Minsk Group and Minsk Group Co-Chairs.


The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations they have made (1) to the government of Azerbaijan, and (2) at the United Nations, about the alleged use of white phosphorus by the Azerbaijan military against Armenian civilian targets. [HL10013]

Baroness Sugg: The UK Government is aware of reports that white phosphorus has been used, by both parties, although we have not made an assessment of these allegations. These claims are incredibly difficult to authenticate. Her Majesty’s Government strongly supports the appropriate national and international accountability mechanisms to investigate and report on allegations of violations/breaches of international law. At the current time, we have not made representations to either Government or the United Nations. However, we continue to monitor the situation with concern.