In a joint statement on Friday, a group of intellectuals from Turkey urged international organisations, especially the United Nations (UN), to take immediate action to prevent potential genocide and make the ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh permanent.
The call comes amid Azerbaijan’s recent military assault on the ethnic Armenian region, which has led to casualties, including more than 200 deaths.
The group, comprising 123 professionals such as historian and journalist Ayşe Hür, academic Baskın Oran, and human rights activist Eren Keskin, criticised the international community for merely observing Azerbaijan’s military activities. “Expecting Baku, which ignored previous calls for restraint, to change its mind today is absurd,” the group stated. They emphasised the immediate need for humanitarian aid and airlift operations to evacuate civilians to safer locations.
Luis Moreno Ocampo, the first chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, recently opined that the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh should be called by its proper name: genocide. Ocampo highlighted that Azerbaijan’s blockade of the Lachin Corridor, the only connection between Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh, poses a “real and imminent risk” to the Armenian population’s health and life. He criticised Azerbaijan’s defiance of international law, stating that the Genocide Convention of 1948 clearly outlines that one way to commit the crime is by “deliberately inflicting on [a] group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.”
Ocampo’s comments resonate with the urgent call from the Turkish professionals, who also emphasised the need for immediate international action. Both parties stress that the international community must not let geopolitical interests overshadow the human tragedy unfolding in Nagorno-Karabakh.