Bishop of Coventry raises access to religious sites and humanitarian aid in Azerbaijan

On 8th March 2021 the Bishop of Coventry received written answers to questions of Government on access to humanitarian aid and to religious sites in Azerbaijan by Armenians:

The Lord Bishop of Coventry: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the implementation of restrictions for Armenians to visit the Dadivank Monastery, what representations they have made to the government of Azerbaijan to ensure that Armenians are able to access sites of historical religious importance in areas returned to Azerbaijan. [HL13382]

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: The UK Government has made no representations to the Government of Azerbaijan on this issue. However, we continue to urge both Governments to work with UNESCO to ensure the protection of all sites of historical and religious importance.

The Lord Bishop of Coventry: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to reports that authorisation from the government of Russia is now required for foreign nationals to enter the Nagorno-Karabakh region, what assessment they have made of the impact this will have on the delivery of humanitarian aid to that region. [HL13381]

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: The UK Government is aware of reports that Russian peacekeepers stationed in Nagorno-Karabakh are providing authorisation for those who wish to enter the region. Whilst we have not made an assessment on whether this will impact the delivery of humanitarian aid, during her recent visits to Baku and Yerevan the Minister for the European Neighbourhood and the Americas urged closer cooperation between Azerbaijan and Armenia with a view to ensuring that all humanitarian agencies were able to access the region to deliver aid.