The UN praises Azerbaijan’s support rendered to internally displaced people, UN Resident Coordinator in Azerbaijan Ghulam Isaczai said.
Isaczai made the remarks in Baku during a round table meeting in connection with rendering assistance to the Azerbaijani State Committee for Affairs of Refugees and IDPs by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.
“The situation related to internally displaced people in Azerbaijan has been one of the political issues related to the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict over the past 27 years,” the UN resident coordinator said.
“From the very beginning, the UN has rendered support to internally displaced people,” Isaczai said. “Several structures of the organization also have rendered support.”
The UN resident coordinator added that the UN continues to support refugees even after signing the ceasefire agreement.
“Presently, over 600,000 internally displaced people live in conditions of uncertainty, that is, it is unknown when they will return to their native lands,” Isaczai said. “Most of these internally displaced people live in comfortable, warm houses. But we must not forget that many people still live in conditions that do not meet the standards. It is necessary to solve the problems of those who have not been relocated to new settlements. At least we must try to relatively relieve their conditions."
The UN resident coordinator added that there is a high unemployment rate among internally displaced people.
Isaczai said the UN is working on a new partnership program with the Azerbaijani government.
“We will try to solve the problems of the Azerbaijani internally displaced people more thoroughly within this program,” the UN resident coordinator said. “That is, all structures included in the UN must support this process because we consider internally displaced people as a vulnerable group.”
“It is necessary to provide vulnerable groups with the same opportunities that other groups of society have to achieve sustainable development,” Isaczai said.
“They must not be isolated from the socio-economic life of society,” the UN resident coordinator said. “It is necessary to increase inclusivity. The UN will continue to support the Azerbaijani State Committee for Affairs of Refugees and IDPs.”
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from Nagorno Karabakh and the surrounding districts.