Damage & Threat Alert: New Military Installations near Historic Sites in Aghdam & Martakert

CHW is concerned about new military installations near historic sites in Aghdam&Martakert. Between April & July 2021, bunkers were dug into a historic Azerbaijani cemetery, near a mausoleum. They were recently expanded as indicated in an April 2023 image.

In addition, a series of bunkers have appeared roughly 80 meters to the east of the Azerbaijani cemetery and mausoleum near Gyzyl Kangarli/Nor Maragha.

Likewise, between October 2022 and May 2023, bunkers appeared 115 meters east of the ruins of the early medieval church of Gyavurkala, located between Bayahmadli/Nor Haykajur and Sofulu villages.

Article 4.1 of the Hague Convention calls on parties to refrain “from any use of the [cultural] property and its immediate surroundings…which are likely to expose it to destruction or damage in the event of armed conflict.” Locating bunkers near heritage sites is a violation. This is a worrisome pattern. CHW calls on Az authorities to abide by Article 4.1 of the Hague Convention and remove military installations near heritage sites. Information on the 5-6th c. church and its history of excavation can be found here. More on the Gyzyl Kangarli cemetery here.

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