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1 An analysis of the Nagorno1Karabakh conflict according to international law Vahid Aliyev, Master of Laws (LLM), University College London (UCL) (This article was written under the supervision of Professor Roger O’Keefe and successfully submitted as an Independent Research Essay (IRE) to the University College London (UCL) Faculty of Laws on September 1, 2015.) Abstract This article endeavours to bring into the spotlight currently an analysis and discussion of the conflict in Nagorno7Karabakh, which is considered to be a ‘frozen conflict’ following dissolution of the Soviet Union. It commences with a brief historical and factual background to the conflict, concentrating primarily on the international legal aspects of the Karabakh Armenians’ right to secession under Soviet and international law in the context of the principle of uti possidetis juris put forward by Azerbaijan. Consideration is also given to the violations of international law by Armenia pertaining to referendums and the passport issue, which had previously not been well researched and documented. The article will conclude with a brief assessment of the recent Chiragov and Others v. Armenia case (by ECtHR Grand Chamber June 16 th 2015), which has put an end to Armenia’s denial of its direct involvement in Nagorno7Karabakh conflict and its responsibility for the occupation of Nagorno7Karabakh and seven surrounding districts. This situation needs a clear rethinking by international bodies in conflict resolution. Introduction During the latter part of the 20 th century, the right of peoples to self7determination succeeded in changing many of the basic tenets of international law as well as reshaping the international community in the post7Cold War era. All peoples have the right to self7 determination according to the United Nations (UN) Charter, which clearly states that “Nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and fair equality of opportunity have the right to freely choose their sovereignty and international political status with no external compulsion or interference”. (Art.1 and 55) 1 However, it is still rather ambiguous what the status is of the right of self7determination principle under international law and who can legitimately claim this right. Self7determination is basically a principle concerned with the right to be a State, according to Crawford 2 but it is still unclear as to whether self7determination is a criterion of statehood. It is noteworthy that there is no mention in the Covenant of the League of Nations of the principle of self7determination. Hence, this leads to the question of who can claim legitimately to exercise the right of self7determination, at what time and under which circumstances. Vasquez opined that “Of all the issues over which wars could logically be fought, territorial issues seem to be the ones most often associated with wars. Few interstate wars are fought without any territorial issue being involved in one way or another”. 3 1 Charter of the United Nations and Statute of the International Court of Justice (26 June 1945) <http://www.un.org/en/documents/charter/chapter1.shtml> accessed 28 August 2015 2 James Crawford, The Creation of States in International Law (2 nd edn, OUP 2006) 19726 3 John Vasquez, The War Puzzle (CUP 1993) 151

An analysis of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict according to international law

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An#analysis#of#the#Nagorno1Karabakh#conflict#according#to#international#law##Vahid&Aliyev,&Master'of'Laws'(LLM),'University'College'London'(UCL)'

#(This' article' was' written' under' the' supervision' of' Professor& Roger& O’Keefe' and'successfully' submitted' as' an' Independent' Research' Essay' (IRE)' to' the' University'

College'London'(UCL)'Faculty'of'Laws'on'September&1,&2015.)'#Abstract#This%article%endeavours%to%bring%into%the%spotlight%currently%an%analysis%and%discussion%of%the%conflict%in%Nagorno7Karabakh,%which%is%considered%to%be%a%‘frozen%conflict’%following%dissolution% of% the% Soviet% Union.% It% commences% with% a% brief% historical% and% factual%background%to%the%conflict,%concentrating%primarily%on%the%international% legal%aspects%of%the%Karabakh%Armenians’% right% to% secession%under%Soviet% and% international% law% in% the%context%of%the%principle%of%uti'possidetis'juris'put%forward%by%Azerbaijan.%Consideration%is%also%given%to%the%violations%of%international%law%by%Armenia%pertaining%to%referendums%and%the%passport%issue,%which%had%previously%not%been%well%researched%and%documented.%The%article%will%conclude%with%a%brief%assessment%of%the%recent%Chiragov'and'Others'v.'Armenia%case%(by%ECtHR%Grand%Chamber%June%16th%2015),%which%has%put%an%end%to%Armenia’s%denial%of%its%direct%involvement%in%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict%and%its%responsibility%for%the%occupation%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%and%seven%surrounding%districts.%This%situation%needs%a%clear%rethinking%by%international%bodies%in%conflict%resolution.%#Introduction#During% the% latter% part% of% the% 20th% century,% the% right% of% peoples% to% self7determination%succeeded%in%changing%many%of%the%basic%tenets%of%international%law%as%well%as%reshaping%the%international%community%in%the%post7Cold%War%era.%All%peoples%have%the%right%to%self7determination%according%to%the%United%Nations%(UN)%Charter,%which%clearly%states%that%%“Nations%based%on%respect%for%the%principle%of%equal%rights%and%fair%equality%of%opportunity%have%the%right%to%

freely%choose%their%sovereignty%and%international%political%status%with%no%external%compulsion%or%interference”.%(Art.1%and%55)1%

%However,%it%is%still%rather%ambiguous%what%the%status%is%of%the%right%of%self7determination%principle%under%international%law%and%who%can%legitimately%claim%this%right.%%%Self7determination%is%basically%a%principle%concerned%with%the%right%to%be%a%State,%according%to% Crawford2%but% it% is% still% unclear% as% to% whether% self7determination% is% a% criterion% of%statehood.% It% is%noteworthy% that% there% is%no%mention% in% the%Covenant%of% the%League%of%Nations%of%the%principle%of%self7determination.%Hence,%this% leads%to%the%question%of%who%can%claim%legitimately%to%exercise%the%right%of%self7determination,%at%what%time%and%under%which%circumstances.%Vasquez%opined%that%%“Of%all%the%issues%over%which%wars%could%logically%be%fought,%territorial%issues%seem%to%be%the%ones%most%often%associated%with%wars.%Few%interstate%wars%are%fought%without%any%territorial%issue%being%involved%in%

one%way%or%another”.3%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1%Charter%of%the%United%Nations%and%Statute%of%the%International%Court%of%Justice%(26%June%1945)%<http://www.un.org/en/documents/charter/chapter1.shtml>%accessed%28%August%2015%2%James%Crawford,%The%Creation%of%States%in%International%Law%(2nd%edn,%OUP%2006)%19726%3%John%Vasquez,%The%War%Puzzle%(CUP%1993)%151%

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%National% self7determination% would% appear% to% be% contrary% to% the% principle% of% territorial%integrity%or%sovereignty%of%states%because%it% is%the%people’s%will%which%actually%makes%a%state%legitimate.%The%aim%of%this%research%paper%is%to%attempt%to%throw%light%on%the%continuing%conflict%of%Nagorno7Karabakh,%between%the%Republic%of%Armenia%and% the%Republic%of%Azerbaijan,%which% remains%one%of% the% ‘frozen%conflicts’%on% former%Soviet%Union% territory.%The%main%claim%of%Armenia%is%that%the%Karabakh%Armenians%have%the%right%to%secede%from%Azerbaijan%and% establish% their% own% state% based% on% the% principle% of% self7determination.%Azerbaijan%counters%by%asserting%that%Armenia%should%be%recognised%as%an%aggressor%based%on%the%principle%of% territorial% integrity.%Despite%no%major%outbreaks%of% violence%since%1994,%no%resolution%has%yet%been%achieved%between%Armenia%and%Azerbaijan%in%this%conflict%even%though% there% have% been%many% international% attempts% at%mediation.% The% legal% aspects%appear%to%have%become%blurred%over%the%years.%This%research%paper%will%argue%that%neither%Soviet%law%nor%international%law%have%provided%a%right%to%secession%for%Nagorno7Karabakh%and%the%apparent%irredentist%claims%of%self7determination%by%Karabakh%Armenians%is%probably%a%disguise%for%the%expansion%of%Armenian%territory.%Nagorno7Karabakh%is%de'jure%part%of%Azerbaijan,%which%is%claiming%territorial%integrity. Firstly,%this%paper%will%give%some%important%historical%and%factual%background%to%the%conflict%over%Nagorno7Karabakh%before%moving%on% to% the%major% thrust%of% the%work%which% is% to%examine%the%legal%aspects%of%the%situation%–%the%disputed%right%to%secession%of%Armenians%residing% in%Nagorno7Karabakh% and% the% present% legal% status% of% the% territory.% Then,% the%invalidity% of% referendums% of% 1991% and% 2006% held% in% Nagorno7Karabakh% and% granting%passports% by% the% Republic% of% Armenia% to% the% citizens% of% the% disputed% region% will% be%demonstrated%as%major%international%law%violations.%Finally,%the%significance%of%the%recent%ECtHR%judgement%on%Chiragov'and'Others'v.'Armenia4%case%in%terms%of%the%determination%of% the% nature% of% the% conflict% will% be% analysed.% % The% paper% will% conclude% with% a% short%assessment%of%the%potential%factual%role%of%law%in%seeking%conflict%resolution%in%Nagorno7Karabakh%since% it% is%clear% that% impartial%guidance%concerning%the%conflicting%Armenian7Azerbaijani%legal%position%is%needed.%%Historical#and#factual#background#of#the#Nagorno1Karabakh#conflict#For% a% full% understanding% of% the% main% causes% of% the% Nagorno7Karabakh% conflict,% it% is%essential% to% trace% backwards% in% history.% As% with% many% other% Caucasian% regions,% the%territory%of%today’s%Nagorno7Karabakh%has%been%for%centuries%the%centre%of%innumerable%territorial%disputes,%military%conquests%and%ethnic%conflicts.%As%a%result,%Azerbaijanis%and%Armenians%have%divergent%views%on%the%ethnic%history%of% the%region,%both%of%which%are%reflected%in%the%literature.%Dating%back%to%ancient%history%Armenian%sources%consider%Nagorno7Karabakh%to%be%part%of%early%Armenia%designated%as%a%province%of%Artzakh5%whereas%in%Azerbaijani%sources%it%locates% this% province% within% the% borders% of% former% Caucasian% Albania.6%The% origin% of%Karabakh% or% Garabagh% is% generally% believed% to% be% derived% from% Turkic% or% Persian%language%meaning%‘black%garden’.%It%can%be%assumed%that%by%the%19th%century,%Nagorno7Karabakh%was%ethnically%mixed%when%huge%population%migrations%took%place%caused%by%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!4%Chiragov%and%Others%v.%Armenia%App%no%13216/05%(ECtHR,%16%June%2015)%5%Otto%Luchterhandt,%Das%Recht%Berg7Karabaghs%auf%staatliche%Unabhängigkeit%aus%völkerrechtlicher%Sicht.%Archiv%des%Volkerrecht,%31%(1993)%31,%38%cited%in%H.%Kruger,%The'NagornoIKarabakh'Conflict%(Springer7Verlag%Berlin%2010)%4!6%Farida%Mamedova%in:%Uwe%Halbach/Andreas%Kappeler%(eds.),%Krisenherd%Kaukasus%(1995),%1107129%cited%in%H.%Kruger,%The'NagornoIKarabakh'Conflict%(Springer7Verlag%Berlin%2010)%4%

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the% struggle% for% supremacy% between%Persia,% Tsarist% Russia% and% the% Turkish%Ottoman%Empire.%According%to%Cornell,%this%struggle%and%the%ensuing%Russian%rule%led%to%a%huge%migration%flow%of%Armenians%into%Nagorno7Karabakh%and%other%regions%and%eventually%the%number%of% Armenians% predominated. 7 %Russia% intended% to% consolidate% its% control% by% its%Christianisation%policy%and%continued%Armenian%settlement,%which%was%a%key%reason%for%early% tensions% in% the% area.% This% antipathy%was% further% exacerbated%by% the% preferential%Russian%treatment%of%Armenians%coupled%with%an%exaggerated%feeling%of%a%threat%from%the%Azerbaijanis.%As%a%result%of%the%1905%Revolution%in%Russia,%violence%broke%out%in%Caucasia%for%the%first%time%and%according%to%the%Human%Rights%Watch,%violent%attacks%cost%the%lives%of%thousands%of%both%Armenians%and%Azerbaijanis.8%Following%the%October%Revolution%in%1917,%independent%republics%were%declared%for%the%territories%of%Armenia,%Azerbaijan%and%Georgia%and%both%the%Armenians%and%Azerbaijanis%laid%claim%for%Nagorno7Karabakh.%This%was% followed%by%armed%clashes%and%attacks%on%both%sides.%During%the%period%of%1918%to%1920%the%key%obstacle%to%this%territorial%dispute%over%Nagorno7Karabakh%is%probably%because%it%is%an%‘indivisible%issue’%since%the%territory%is%viewed%as%an%undividable%homeland.9%Azerbaijan%often%refers%to%the%Treaty%Batum%of%4%June%1918%between%Armenia%and%the%Ottoman%Empire,%which%gave%the%state%only%the%districts%of%Erevan%(the%current%capital%of%Armenia)% and%Echmiadzin,% some%10,000% sq.% km.10%This% treaty%was% not% respected% and%ethnic%conflict%raged%in%Karabakh%throughout%the%year.%In% 1920,% the% Bolshevist% Russian% Army% invaded% the% Southern% Caucasus% and% in% 1921%decided%to%keep%Nagorno7Karabakh%within%the%newly%formed%Azerbaijan%Soviet%Socialist%Republic%(ASSR),%which%later%became%the%part%of%the%Soviet%Union.11%This%decision%about%the%territory%was%incorporated%into%the%Soviet%Constitution.%For%several%decades%after%this,%it%was%comparatively%peaceful%in%the%region%despite%the%Armenians%repeatedly%demanding%annexation%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%to%the%Armenian%Soviet%Socialist%Republic.%Consequently,%tensions%continued%to%exist%and%there%were%several%violent%outbreaks.12%It%is% interesting% to% consider% why% the% Soviets% refused% to% annex% the% region% to% Armenia%especially%when%their%claim%to%the%territory%adheres%to%the%principle%of%majority%rule%and%possibly% the%principle% tenure%since% their%ancestors%were%arguably% the% first% to%settle% the%territory.%It%would%appear%that%the%decision%to%assign%Nagorno7Karabakh%to%Azerbaijan%was%predominantly%one%of%strategic%economics.%The%Bolsheviks% recognised% that%Azerbaijan%had%a%larger%population%and%potential%oil%resources%and%therefore,%could%be%considered%a%more%important%player%than%Armenia.%Doubtlessly%this%may%have%resulted%in%Armenians’%nationalist%feelings%and%the%perception%of%being%collectively%wronged%or%victimised.%As% perestroika% spread,% nationalist% movements% throughout% the% Soviet% Union% became%stronger%as%was% the%case%with%Nagorno7Karabakh.%The%violent%conflict%started% in%1988%with% mass% demonstrations% in% support% of% the% transfer% of% Nagorno7Karabakh% to% the%Armenian%SSR.% These% violent% demonstrations% took% place% in%Erevan% and%Stepanakert,%which%were%accompanied%by%an%appeal%to%Moscow%to%transfer%the%territory%to%Armenia.%Mikhail%Gorbachev%fearing%an%Azerbaijani%uprising%did%not%want%to%appear%to%be%openly%supporting%Armenia%and%is%quoted%as%saying:%“the%only%exit%from%the%situation%is%a%political%!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!7%Svante%Cornell,%Small%Nations%and%Great%Powers:%A%Study%of%Ethnopolitical%Conflict%in%the%Caucasus%(Curzon%Press%2001)%54%8%Human%Rights%Watch,%Playing'the'‘Communal'Card’:'Communal'Violence'and'Human'Rights%(1995)%9%Duffy%Toft,%The%Geography%of%Ethnic%Violence%(Princeton%University%Press%2003)!10%Brigitte%Stern,%‘La%Succession%d’Etats’,%(Martrinus%Nijhoff%Publishers%1996)%Vol.%262%Recueil%des%Cours%de%l’Academie%de%Droit%International%9,%48751%cited%in%M.%Kuburas,%‘Ethnic'Conflict'in'NagornoIKarabakh’%Review%of%European%and%Russian%Affairs%(RERA)%(2011)%Vol.%6%(1)%44,%47%11%Thomas%de%Waal,%Black%Garden%(New%York%University%Press%2003)%130%12%Heiko%Kruger,%Nagorno7Karabakh%in%Christian%Walter,%Antje%von%Ungern7Sternberg,%and%Kavus%Abushov%(eds.),%SelfIDetermination'and'Secession'in'International'Law%(OUP%2014)!

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one.%We%could%not%bring%about% the%decision% in%Afghanistan%and%here% it% is% the%same”.13%Nagorno7Karabakh%was%placed%under%special%administration%citing%the%USSR%Supreme%Soviet%Constitution,14%which%forbids%any%changes%in%territory%without%all%republics’%consent.%As%a%result,%both%parties%were%very%dissatisfied%with%Moscow.15%This% period% of% violence% escalated% between% 1988% and% when% Azerbaijan% and% Armenia%declared%independence%in%August%and%September%1991%respectively.%This%culminated%in%a%war%between%Armenia%and%Azerbaijan%and%overall,%it%is%estimated%that%there%were%25,000%casualties%and%350,000%Armenians%and%about%800,000%Azerbaijanis%became%refugees%and%internally%displaced%people%(IDP).16%Since%1994,%a%tentative%ceasefire%has%been%achieved%and%despite%this%arranged%ceasefire%occasional%sporadic%violence%can%still%occur% in%the%region.%The%Conference%on%Security%and%Cooperation%in%Europe%or%the%OCSE%Minsk%group,%which%includes%Russia,%US%and%France,%has%not%been%able%to%resolve%the%dispute.%%Legal#status#of#Nagorno1Karabakh#according#to#Soviet#Law#Since%1994%Nagorno7Karabakh%has%been%under%Armenian%control% together%with%seven%adjacent%administrative%districts%though%strictly%speaking%this%is%under%the%joint%control%of%the%Republic%of%Armenia%and%Karabakh%Armenians.%(For'the'map'of'NagornoIKarabakh'and' the'districts'please'see' the'Appendix).%According% to%Kruger,% this% region%has%been%under% the% administration% of% the% unrecognised% Republic% of% Nagorno7Karabakh. 17%Nevertheless,%it%is%the%military,%financial%and%political%involvement%and%assistance%of%the%Republic% of% Armenia,% which% forms% the% backbone% of% the% community% established% in%Nagorno7Karabakh.%In% order% to% examine% the% legal% dispute% between% the% Armenian% and% Azerbaijani% sides%concerning% the% issue%of% the%right% to%secede%and%also% the%question%of% the%present% legal%status%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%it% is%necessary%to%go%back%to%the%time%of%the%collapse%and%dissolution%of%the%Soviet%Union.%It%was%Mikhail%Gorbachev’s% attempt% to%maintain% the% old%Soviet% order%which% reinforced%these%national%movements% for% independence%across% the%entire%USSR% territory.%One%of%Gorbachev’s%attempts%to%rebuild%the%federal%and%political%structure%of%the%Soviet%Union%was%through%a%number%of%acts%one%of%which%was% the%Soviet%Law%on%Secession.18%This%was%concerned%with%the%procedure%of%a%union%republic’s%secession%from%the%USSR,%which%was%already% included% in% the%Soviet%Constitution%but%Gorbachev% then% introduced% the%way%of%exercising%this%right.%It%could%be%argued%that%this%was%a%strategic%move%by%Gorbachev%to%prevent%the%dissolution%of%the%USSR.19%However,%this%Law%on%Secession,%despite%offering%a%way%to%independence,%was%extremely%complex%and%probably%would%have%delayed%any%attempt%at% secession.20%The%question%arose%as% to%whether% the%Law%on%Secession%was%actually% in%conformity%with%the%Soviet%Constitution.%Article%72%of%the%Constitution%clearly%stated%that%each%of%the%Union%Republics%could%retain%the%right%to%secede%freely%from%the%USSR,21%which%was%contrary%to%the%Law%on%Secession.%Art.%72%of%the%Constitution%confirms%!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!13%Ben%Fowkes,%The%Disintegration%of%the%Soviet%Union%–%A%Study%in%the%Rise%and%Triumph%on%Nationalism%(New%York:%St.%Martin’s%Press%1997)%14%Constitution%(Fundamental%Law)%of%the%Union%of%Soviet%Socialist%Republics%(USSR)%of%October%7,%1977%Art.%78%<www.constitution.org/cons/ussr77.txt>%accessed%29%August%2015%15%Audrey%Altstadt%‘Ethnic'Conflict'in'NagornoIKarabakh’'in%L%Drobizhova%et%al.%(eds.),'Ethnic'Conflict'in'the'PostISoviet'World:'Case'Studies'in'Analysis%(Armonk,%New%York:%M.E.%Sharpe%1996)%227754%16%Human%Rights%Watch%(n%8)%17%Kruger%(n%12)%18%Boris%Meissner,%‘Die'erste'Phase'der'Verfassungsreform'Gorbacevs'und'ihre'Auswirkungen'auf'das'Verhaltnis'von'Partei'und'Staat’'(1989)%cited%in%H.%Kruger%(n%12)%17722%19%Marcelo%Kohen,%Secession,%International%Law%Perspectives%(CUP%2006)%16%20%Law%of%the%USSR%on%‘Procedures%for%resolution%of%the%issues%related%to%secession%of%Soviet%Republics%from%the%USSR’%of%April%3,%1990%<www.nkrusa.org/nk_conflict/ussr_law.shtml>%accessed%29%August%2015%21%USSR%Constitution%(n%14)%Art.%72%

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the%general%concept%that% the%Soviet%Union%was%legally%constituted%as%an%association%of%equal%union%republics.%Nevertheless,%exercising%the%right%to%secession%prior%to%1989%was%probably%inconceivable%for%political%reasons.%However,%this%right%remained%an%integral%part%of%the%Constitution%and%therefore%had%real%force%of%law%if%secession%became%an%issue.%Under% Art.% 3% of% the% Law% of% the% Secession,% autonomous% regions% such% as% Nagorno7Karabakh%were%granted%the%right%to%decide%on%their%own%legal%status%if%a%union%republic%resolved%to%secede%from%the%Soviet%Union.22%%Conversely,%%the%Soviet%Constitution%in%Art.%78% and% 86% established% that% autonomous% regions% formed% constituent% parts% of% a% union%republic% and% any% territorial% alteration% needed% the% consent% of% the% union% republic. 23%According%to%Art.%87.3%of%the%Soviet%Constitution,%Nagorno7Karabakh%is%specifically%listed%as%an%autonomous%region%(Nagorno7Karabakh%Autonomous%Oblast%(NKAO))%forming%an%integral%part%of%the%Azerbaijan%SSR.24%As%a%result,%in%the%case%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%the%Azerbaijan#SSR%had%to%agree%on%the%secession%of%the%region.%According% to% Hannum,% none% of% the% union% republics% selected% the% route% proposed% by%Gorbachev.25%Nevertheless,%Karabakh%Armenians%invoked%Art.%3,%which%included%the%right%to% secede.% Nagorno7Karabakh% could% have% achieved% independence% if% it% had% satisfied%completely%the%complex%procedure%of%the%Law%on%Secession.%The%conditions%of%the%Law%on%Secession,%which% the%Karabakh%Armenians%had% to%meet,% included%approval% by% the%Supreme% Soviet% of% the% Union% Republic% to% conduct% a% referendum. 26 %It% was% a% strict%requirement%that%the%organisation%of%any%referendum%and%the%review%of%its%results%by%an%electoral%commission%should%be%set%up%by%the%Supreme%Soviet%of%the%Union%Republic.27%%In%the%end,%Karabakh%Armenians%were%unable%to%meet%the%list%of%strict%required%conditions%and%it%proved%impossible%to%remove%all%the%obstacles%Gorbachev%had%placed%as%a%barrier%to%secession.%For%example,%the%referendum%held%in%Nagorno7Karabakh%was%organised%and%executed% without% the% involvement% of% the% Azerbaijan% SSR% as% required% by% the% Law% on%Secession.% (The% issue%of% the% referendum%will% be%discussed% in%more%detail% later% in% this%paper).%At%the%end%of%1991,%the%Soviet%Union%collapsed%and%all%the%institutions,%which%should%have%been% involved% in%any%attempt%at% secession,% simply%disappeared.%Karabakh%Armenians%simply%ran%out%of%time%as%did%all%the%autonomous%regions.%None%of%these%regions%achieved%independence% during% Soviet% times% based% on% the% right% to% secede% under% the% Law% on%Secession% but% their% fate%was% linked% to% that% of% their% union% republic.%On% the% one% hand,%Azerbaijan% SSR% could% refer% to% its% constitutional% right% to% secession,% which% was% freely%granted%but%on%the%other%hand%a%violation%of%the%Law%on%Secession%would%have%meant%that%Azerbaijan%was%unable%to%secede%from%the%USSR%until%its%dissolution%in%December%1991.%Nagorno7Karabakh%would%not%have%achieved%any%practical%benefit%from%this.%According%to%the% international%principle%of%uti'possidetis' juris'under% these% terms,%Nagorno7Karabakh%would%still%have%constituted%a%part%of%the%Azerbaijan%Republic.%It% is%crucial%to%examine%whether%Nagorno7Karabakh%could%invoke%the%right%to%secession%under%international%law%and%this%actually%forms%the%legal%dispute%between%Armenians%and%Azerbaijanis.%The%Armenian%side%primarily%refers%to%the%right%to%self7determination,%which%is%the%right%to%secession,%whereas%the%Azerbaijanis%claim%territorial%rights%and%firmly%reject%the%right%to%secession.%The%Republic%of%Azerbaijan%asserts%that%Nagorno7Karabakh%is%a%part%of%its%territory%by%referring%to%the%principle%of%territorial%integrity.%%A#brief#introduction#to#Uti&possidetis#juris#in#international#law:#definition#and#origin#

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!22%Law%on%Secession%(n%20)%Art.%3%23%USSR%Constitution%(n%14)%Art.%78%and%86%24%USSR%Constitution%(n%14)%Art.%87.3%25%Hurst%Hannum,%Documents%on%Autonomy%and%Minority%Rights%(MartinusNijhoff%1993)%742%26%Law%on%Secession%(n%20)%Art.%2%para%2%27%Law%on%Secession%(n%20)%Art.%4!

! 6!

According%to%Boczek’s%International%Law%Dictionary,28%uti'possidetis%can%be%defined%as%the%principle%that%refers%to%the%transformation%of% former%administrative%borders%of%dissolved%states%or% a% colonial% empire% into% international% boundaries%of% newly% independent% states.%Oppenheim’s% International% Law% highlights% the% role% of% uti' possidetis% as% an% important%principle,%which%strengthens%the%stability%of%state%boundaries,29%and%Shaw%adds%that%uti'possidetis%is%a%principle%designed%to%reinforce%the%principle%of%territorial%integrity.30%As%for%settling%the%disputes%about%boundaries%in%international%law%uti'possidetis'prolongs%the%idea%of% state% succession.31%Corten32%and% Dinh,% Daillier% and% Pellet33%both% writing% in% French,%further%add%that%the%principle%of%uti'possidetis%attempts%to%protect%the%boundaries%of%newly%independent%states,%primarily%to%shield%these%against%further%defragmentation.%All%of%these%commentators%argue%that%uti'possidetis%has%been%adopted%in%international%law%to%protect%the% territorial% integrity% of% former% states,% which% are% exercising% their% rights% to% self7determination.%Thus,%uti'possidetis'is%considered%to%be%one%of%the%elements%in%the%creation%of%statehood,%pertaining% to% the%creation%process%of%newly% independent%states,%such%as%Nagorno7Karabakh.%(The%application%of%this%principle%to%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%case%will%be%discussed%in%more%detail%later%in%this%paper).%Uti'possidetis'has%the%potential%to%transform%any%kind%of%internal%territorial%demarcation,%established% in% domestic% law% prior% to% secession,% into% an% international% one% if% secession%succeeds.%The%debate%is%what%this%means%in%law%for%a%territorial%entity,%such%as%Nagorno7Karabakh,%which%is%claiming%independence%from%its%mother%state,%which%is%a%former%Soviet%republic%and%a%member%state%of% the%Commonwealth%of% Independent%States% (CIS).%The%question%is%whether%the%international%legal%principle%of%uti'possidetis'applies%to%Nagorno7Karabakh’s%boundaries,%and%if%so,%what%this%principle%would%demand.%The%term%uti'possidetis'originates%from%Roman%law%and%refers%to%the%right%of%temporary%ownership%over% things%and%preserving% the%status%quo.%The% rule%was% “uti'possidetis,' ita%possideatis”,%meaning% “as% you%possess,% so%may% you%possess”.34%However,% in% the% 19th%century,% the% meaning% of% uti' possidetis' in% international% relations% was% changed% in% two%aspects.%The%law%no%longer%applied%to%private%individuals%and%property%but%to%state%territory.%Moreover,%it%denoted%a%definitive%status35%but%actually%entered%international%law%at%a%time%when% according% to% Moore,% “its% fundamental% object,% in% private% law,% of% preventing% and%invalidating%the%use%of%force,%no%longer%existed”.36%In%contemporary%international%law,%uti'possidetis'has%now%the%overall%purpose%of%securing%the% international% prohibition% of% forcible% territorial% transfers.% The% original% Roman% law%principle%has%been%extensively%affected%by%its%sui'generis%interpretation%and%application%in%Latin%America,%such%as%in%the%boundary%dispute%between%Venezuela%and%Columbia.37%Uti'

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!28%Boleslaw%Boczek,%International%Law:%A%Dictionary%(Scarecrow%Press,%Inc.%2005)%29%Robert%Jennings%and%Arthur%Watts%(eds.)%Oppenheim's%International%Law%(9th%edn,%1992)%972%et%seq.%30%Malcolm%Shaw,%‘Peoples,%Territorialism%and%Boundaries’%(1997)%3%EJIL%478%31%Anthony%Oye%Cukwurah,%The%Settlement%of%Boundary%Disputes%in%International%Law%(Manchester%University%Press%1967)%114%32%Olivier%Corten,%‘Droit%des%Peuples%a%Disposer%D’eux7Memes%et%Uti%Possidetis:%Deux%Faces%D’une%Meme%Medaille?’%cited%in%Anne%Peters,%The'Principles'of'Uti'Possidetis'Juris%in%Christian%Walter,%Antje%von%Ungern7Sternberg,%and%Kavus%Abushov%(eds.),%SelfIDetermination'and'Secession'in'International'Law%(OUP%2014)%33%Nguyen%Quoc%Dinh,%P.%Daillier%and%A.%Pellet,%Droit%International%Public%(5th%edn.1994)%397!34%Suzanne%Lalonde,%Determining%Boundaries%in%a%Conflicting%World:%The%Role%of%Uti%Possidetis%(McGill7Queen’s%University%Press%2002)%35%Johann%Caspar%Bluntschli,%Das%Moderne%Volkerrecht%der%civilisierten%Staaten%als%Rechtsbuch%dargestellt%(Beck’sche%Buchhandlung%1868),%para%715%cited%in%Anne%Peters,%The'Principles'of'Uti'Possidetis'Juris%in%Christian%Walter,%Antje%von%Ungern7Sternberg,%and%Kavus%Abushov%(eds.),%SelfIDetermination'and'Secession'in'International'Law%(OUP%2014)%36%John%Basset%Moore,%Memorandum'on'Uti'Possidetis:'CostaIRica'Panama'Arbitration%(Bancroft%Library%1911)%578%37%Enver%Hasani,%‘Uti%Possidetis%Juris:%From%Rome%to%Kosovo’%(2003)%27%FLFWA%85%et%seq.!

! 7!

possidetis'became%a% principle% of% constitutional% and%South%American% international% law.%More%recently%in%Africa,%uti'possidetis'was%applied%in%the%Case'Concerning'the'Frontier'Dispute% (Burkina'Faso' v.'Republic' of'Mali),% two% former%French% colonies,% in%which% the%International%Court%of% Justice% (ICJ)% stated% that%uti' possidetis'was% intended% to%upgrade%former%colonial%delineations% into% international%boundaries.38%Shaw%emphasises% that% the%main%aim%of%the%court%in%this%case%was%to%make%a%special%statement%on%such%cases%related%to% the% process% of% obtaining% independence. 39 %This% supports% the% argument% that% uti'possidetis' as% a% principle% of% international% law% is% not% only% applicable% in% all% cases% of%decolonisation%but%also%in%all%situations%where%there%is%a%transfer%from%one%sovereign%power%to%another.%The%Badinter%Commission%on%Former%Yugoslavia%adhered%to%the%ICJ’s%position,%arguing%in%favour%of%uti'possidetis%%being%recognised%as%an%important%international%law%principle.40%The%principle’s%application%in%the%cases%of%the%Socialist%Federal%Republic%of%Yugoslavia%(SFRY),%Czechoslovakia%and% the%USSR%supports% the%argument% that%uti'possidetis'has%become%a%rule%of%customary%international%law.%The%dissolution%of%the%former%communist%federations,%including%the%USSR%and%SFRY%became%a%re7emergence%for%uti'possidetis'in%non7colonial%format,%which%is%becoming%explicitly%recognised%by%the%legal%community.%%The#principle#of#Uti&possidetis&juris#and#its#relevance#for#the#issue#of#secession.#The#problem.#The%main%goal%of%this%section%of%the%research%paper%is%to%examine%the%correlation%of%uti'possidetis%juris%and%self7determination%in%the%Post7Soviet%era%in%Nagorno7Karabakh.%The%problem%arising%between%the%correlation%of%these%two%principles%is%one%of%the%most%complex%issues% in%contemporary% international% law.%After%World%War%II,% the%people’s%right% to%self7determination%emerged%as%one%of%the%fundamental%principles%of%international%law%but%the%extensive%use%of% this%principle% for%political% reasons% led%to%a%change% in% its% initial%original%purpose,% which% was% evident% in% the% decolonisation% process.% As% a% result,% this% set% the%principle%of%self7determination%against%other%principles%of% international% law%and% led% to%a%conflict%with%the%principles%of%territorial%integrity%and%uti'possidetis.%Before%1945,%in%the%colonial%context,%it%was%always%considered%as%a%possibility%for%a%people%or%group%to%separate%from%a%state%in%order%to%achieve%independence%by%gaining%secure%control%over%its%territory.%If%the%situation%demanded,%this%was%to%be%achieved%by%a%war%of%independence.% However,% since% 1945,% the% international% community% has% become%increasingly%unwilling%to%recognise%unilateral%secession%of%any%part%of%independent%states,%provided%that%such%a%secession%is%rejected%by%the%government%of%that%state.41%The%legal%principle%of%territorial%integrity%has%served%as%a%significant%barrier.%In%fact,%since%1945,%the%UN% has% not% admitted% any% state% created% by% unilateral% secession% contrary% to% declared%wishes% of% the% government% of% the% predecessor% state.%Conversely,% there% are% numerous%examples%of%attempts%at%unilateral%secession,%which%have%failed,%such%as%Tibet,%Biafra,%Kashmir,% the% Turkish% Federated% State% of% Cyprus,% Chechnya,% Abkhazia% and%Nagorno7Karabakh.% Such% attempts% at% secession% have%won% virtually% no% international% support% or%recognition.%The% recent%events,%which%have%occurred% in%Kosovo,% the%war%and% recognition%of%South%Ossetia% and% Abkhazia,% and% the% separation% of% South% Sudan% have% all% highlighted% the%importance% of% legal% argumentation% concerning% the% correlation% between% the% self7determination% principle% and% other% international% law% principles% including% uti' possidetis.%According%to%the%UN%Security%Council%(UNSC)%Resolution,%it%states%“No%territorial%gains%or%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!38%Case%Concerning%the%Frontier%Dispute%(Burkina%Faso%v%Mali)%[1986]%ICJ%Rep%554%para%20%39%Shaw%(n%30)%40%Steve%Terrett,%The%Dissolution%of%Yugoslavia%and%the%Badinter%Arbitration%Commission%(Dartmouth:%Ashgate%2000)%ch%3!41%Crawford%(n%2)%%

! 8!

changes% within% Yugoslavia% brought% about% by% violence% are% acceptable”.42%This% is% the%evidence% that% the%use%of%military% force%as%an% instrument% to% define% state%boundaries% is%outlawed%by%international%law.%For%example,%in%the%case%of%Yugoslavia%in%1992,%and%the%dissolution%of%the%Soviet%Union%in%1991,%in%order%to%upgrade%the%boundaries%of%the%former%federal%states% into% international%boundaries%of%new%states%the%principle%of%uti'possidetis'was%applied.%For%example,%in%2008,%Kosovo%did%not%respect%the%boundary%of%the%former%Yugoslavian%Republic%of%Serbia.%Carrying%this%example%forward%it%is%crucial%to%examine%what%this%event%means%in%law%for%Nagorno7Karabakh,%which%was,%and%still%is%claiming%independence%from%its%mother%state.%In% the% current% contentious% debate% over% Nagorno7Karabakh,% scholars% and% observers%disagree%about%whether%the%principle%of%uti'possidetis%is%actually%applicable%or%not.%In%order%to%answer%the%question%of%the%applicability%of%uti'possidetis%to%secession,%it%is%necessary%to%determine%whether%its%past%application%to%the%territorial%realignments%in%the%course%of%the%dissolution% of% the%Soviet%Union%and%Yugoslavia%was% valid% in% legal% terms%or%whether% it%violated%the%international%law%of%that%time,%the%beginning%of%the%1990s.%It%is%possible,%that%in%today’s%contemporary%law%there%might%hold%a%more%refined%answer%to%the%question%of%applying%uti'possidetis'to%the%current%territorial%problems%in%Nagorno7Karabakh.%The%acceptance%of%uti'possidetis%as%a%principle,%which%can%be%generally%applied%beyond%decolonisation% has% been% challenged% on% two%main% points.% Firstly,% in% law% it%may% not% be%deemed%correct%and%secondly%it%might%offend%other%international%law%principles%especially%the%right%to%self7determination%and%human%rights.%In%the%Burkina'Faso'v.'Mali%case,%there%was%an%ambiguous%obiter'dicta'by%the%Chamber%of%Arbitration%Committee%mentioning%‘fratricidal%struggles%provoked%by%the%challenging%of%frontiers’%which%is%clearly%applicable%beyond%the%decolonisation%situation.%This%would%imply%that%in%the%Chamber’s%view,%the%uti'possidetis%principle%could%be%applied%in%any%situation%where%there%was%a%movement%from%one%sovereign%authority%to%another.%Such%a%statement%outside%ratio'decidendi%of%the%Court%can%constitute%an%authoritative%legal%statement.%The%second%challenge%to%the%implementation%of%uti'possidetis%as%a%principle%of%international%law% is% related% to% the% interaction% between% this% principle% itself% and% the% right% to% self7determination.% Self7determination% cannot% affect% international% territorial% boundaries% as%such,% but% the% succeeding% units%might% be% territorially% defined% in% a% fashion% that% reflects%human%rights%considerations.43%There%would% appear% to% be% very% little% to% oppose% the% acceptance% of% the% principle% of%uti'possidetis'in%international%law%in%order%for%it%to%be%applied%in%all%situations%of%transition%to%independence.%However,% at% present% it% is%evidently%not%an%absolute% rule,%which%can%be%applied%automatically.%The% application% of% the% principle% of% uti' possidetis% to% the% Nagorno7Karabakh% case%demonstrates% quite% clearly% that% Nagorno7Karabakh%was% an% internal% component% of% the%Republic%of%Azerbaijan.%Prior%to%the%break7up%of%the%Soviet%Union%Nagorno7Karabakh%was%situated%within% the% administrative% borders% of% the%Azerbaijan%SSR,%which% constituted% a%union%republic%and%was%therefore%one%of%the%top%level%unions%of%the%USSR.%The%original%Azerbaijan%SSR%administrative%borders%within%the%Soviet%Union%as%defined%in%the%Soviet%Constitution%had%applied%for%decades.%However,%after%the%Azerbaijan%SSR%secession%from%the%Soviet%Union%these%borders%were%converted%according%to%the%uti'possidetis%principle%into%international%borders%of%the%Republic%of%Azerbaijan%including%Nagorno7Karabakh.%All%former% union% republics% of% the% Soviet% Union% were% subjected% to% this% process% of% border%transformation%and%therefore%this%should%not%have%left%any%room%for%doubt%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%case.%Mammadov%makes%an%interesting%comparison%between%the%breaking7up%processes%in%the%USSR%and%the%former%Yugoslavia%by%pointing%out%that%in%line%with%international%law%through%!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!42%UNSC%Res%713%(25%September%1991)%UN%Doc%S/%RES/%713!43%Shaw%(n%30)%

! 9!

the%Alma7Ata%Declaration%of%December%1991% the%USSR%union% republics% regulated% the%process.44%This% declaration% says% “the% states% adopt% the% declaration% by% recognising% and%respecting% territorial% integrity% as%well% as% inviolability% of% existing%borders% of% each%of% the%signatory%states”.%This% indicates% that%union%republics%have%recognised%existing%borders%even%when%the%USSR%collapsed.%By%not%recognising%the%territorial%integrity%of%Azerbaijan,%the%Republic%of%Armenia%had%violated%this%provision.%To%sum%up,% it% can%be%clearly%argued% that% if% the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict%were% to%be%brought%before%the%ICJ,%under%the%uti'possidetis%principle%the%decision%would%be%in%favour%of% Azerbaijan.% However,% because% the% Republic% of% Armenia% continues% to% deny% any%involvement%in%this%conflict%as%a%party,%the%chance%of%submitting%this%dispute%to%the%ICJ%is%virtually%non7existent.%%Referendums#in#Nagorno1Karabakh#–#violation#of#international#law#standards#According%to%the%Badinter%Commission,%it%is%generally%accepted%that%any%boundary%line,%which% deviates% from% that% provided% by% uti' possidetis,% can% only% be% adopted% upon% an%agreement:%%“It%is%well%established%that,%whatever%the%circumstances,%the%right%to%self7determination%must%not%involve%changes%to%existing%frontiers%at%the%time%of%independence%(uti%possidetis%juris)%except%where%the%States%

concerned%agree%otherwise”.45%%In%the%case%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%this%involves%moving%away%from%a%unanimous%contract7like%decision%to%a%majoritarian%decision%taken%in%a%vote.%The%best%way%of%establishing%a%state%boundary%therefore%is%a%referendum%conducted%among%the%interested%populations%but% under% international% supervision.46%In% order% to% function% as% a% legitimate% factor% any%territorial% referendum%must% satisfy% the% international% standards% of% a% free% and% just% vote.%Referendums%have%often%been%used%to%justify%boundaries%especially%in%combination%with%uti'possidetis.%The%Soviet%Secession%Act%adopted%in%April%1990%prescribed%referendums%in%Article%2%(2).%The%application%of%that%law%would%have%justified%the%ongoing%secession%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%but%that%law%was%not%applied.%Going%back%as%early%as%1988%the%local%Soviet%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%called%for%the%territory’s%separation%from%the%Azerbaijan%SSR%and%unification%with%Armenia.%By%the%30th%August%1991,%Azerbaijan%had%declared%that%its%statehood%of%1918%to%1920%had%been%re7established.%As%a%result,%because%Armenia%no%longer% supported% this% plan%Nagorno7Karabakh% renounced% its% unification%with%Armenia.%This%in%turn%led%to%the%local%Soviet%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%declaring%a%Republic%of%Nagorno7Karabakh% on% the% 2nd% September% 1991,% which% relied% on% Art.% 70% of% the% Soviet% Union%Constitution.47%Following%this,%the%Supreme%Council%of%Azerbaijan%adopted%a%Declaration%of% Independence% of% Azerbaijan% on% 18th% October% 1991% and% in% the% following% month,%%Azerbaijan%abolished%the%autonomous%status%of%Nagorno7Karabakh.%This%culminated%in%the%region%organising%a%referendum%on%the%10th%December%1991.%There%was%an%overall%turnout% of% 85%% and% 98%% of% the% voters% voted% in% favour% of% Nagorno7Karabakh’s%!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!44%Mushfig%Mammadov,%‘Legal%Aspects%of%the%Nagorno7Garabagh%Conflict’%(Winter%2006)%Caucasian%Review%of%International%Affairs%(CRIA)%Vol.%1%(1)%14,%17%

45%Alain%Pellet,%‘The%Opinions%of%the%Badinter%Arbitration%Committee%–%A%Second%Breath%for%the%Self7Determination%of%Peoples'%3%EJIL%(1992)%178,%183784%<http://ejil.org/pdfs/3/1/1175.pdf>%accessed%29%August%2015%

46%Marcelo%Cohen,%‘Le%Probleme%des%Frontieres%en%cas%de%Dissolution%et%Separation%d’Etats:%Quelles%Alternatives?’%cited%in%Anne%Peters,%The'Principles'of'Uti'Possidetis'Juris%in%Christian%Walter,%Antje%von%Ungern7Sternberg,%and%Kavus%Abushov%(eds.),%SelfIDetermination'and'Secession'in'International'Law%(OUP%2014)%47%Anne%Peters,%The'Principles'of'Uti'Possidetis'Juris%in%Christian%Walter,%Antje%von%Ungern7Sternberg,%and%Kavus%Abushov%(eds.),%SelfIDetermination'and'Secession'in'International'Law%(OUP%2014)%

! 10!

independence.%However,%the%referendum%was%organised%without%the%involvement%of%the%Azerbaijan%SSR,%which%was%a%mandatory%requirement%of%the%Soviet%Secession%Act%of%April%1990.48%The%referendum%did%not% follow% the%complex%procedure%dictated%by% that%Act%but%contradicted%Art.%78,%86%and%87%of%the%Soviet%Constitution.%As%for%the%legitimacy%of%this%referendum,%Art.%3%of%this%Secession%Act%dated%the%3rd%April%1990%which% supports% self7determination% not% only% of% peoples% but% also% ethnic%minorities%envisaged% the% right% to% self7determination% for% any% Soviet% Union% autonomous% region.49%However,%Armenia’s%position%had%no%substantiation%either%in%national%or%international%law%since% the% referendum% was% held% when% Azerbaijan% was% already% an% independent% state.%Consequently,%any%provision%of% this% law%could%not%be% implemented% to% the% independent%Republic%of%Azerbaijan%and%its%territory.%Furthermore,%the%Karabakh%Armenians%could%not%claim%legitimacy%for%this%secession%from%Azerbaijan%because%of% ‘oppression% theory’% that% is% discrimination%against% the%people%of%Nagorno7Karabakh.%Armenians%and%Azerbaijanis%in%Nagorno7Karabakh%together%formed%the%joint%administration%council%in%Nagorno7Karabakh%and%this%council%was%headed%by%an%Armenian.%Therefore,%considering%all%these%facts,%it%could%not%be%argued%at%that%stage%that%there%was%any%discrimination%towards%the%Armenian%population%of%Nagorno7Karabakh.%From% the% perspective% of% international% laws,% this% referendum% cannot% be% considered%legitimate,%because%it%was%held%without%the%permission%of%the%new%independent%Azerbaijan%State%and%exclusively%on%an%ethnic%basis.%If%the%proponents%of%a%new%boundary%belong%to%a% specific% ethnic% group,% the% result% of% any% referendum%subsequently% reflects% the%ethnic%composition%of%a%territory.%In%the%case%of%Nagorno7Karabakh,%ethnicity% is%not%used%as%a%formal% criterion% for% drawing% the% boundary% lines% but% it% is% clearly% visible% and% becomes%decisive% through% the% referendum.% The% question% would% then% arise% as% to% whether% a%referendum% is% a% wrong% tool% to% safeguard% minority% rights% and% whether% a% referendum%genuinely%legitimises%territorial%rearrangements.%De%Waal%provides%solid%evidence%that%this%referendum%on%unification%with%Armenia%was%little%more%than%a%collection%of%signatures%in%Nagorno7Karabakh% Autonomous% Oblast% (NKAO)’s% factories% and% farms. 50 %The%international%community%has%never%considered%the%ethnic%principle%of%self7determination%as%a%serious%factor%in%any%claims%against%a%state.%Therefore,%as%the%ethnic%basis%of%self7determination%cannot%be%regarded%as%legitimate%without%all%related%parties%agreeing,%this%referendum%is%of%a%discriminatory%nature.%The%main%goal%of%Armenians% in%Nagorno7Karabakh%was%not% to%gain% independence%but%their%goal%was%annexing%Nagorno7Karabakh%to%Armenia.%However,%there%are%numerous%events,%which%would%appear%to%demonstrate%the%true%irredentist%nature%of%the%intention%of%the%Armenian%population% including%the%appointment%of% the%Minister%of%Defence%and%the%election%of%Robert%Kocharyan%(despite% legally%being%a%citizen%of%Azerbaijan).%Since% the%Republic%of%Armenia’s%armed%forces%were%involved%in%this%conflict,%it%therefore%has%a%close%connection%with%the%issue%of%territorial%integrity.%Hence,%it%could%be%argued%that%this%is%no%longer%a%national%conflict%but%an%international%armed%conflict%in%which%Armenia%should%be%regarded%as%the%aggressor.%To%sum%up%this%section,%the%referendum%in%Nagorno7Karabakh%did%not%provide%a%strong%justification% for% the% drawing% up% of% territorial% boundaries% even% if% it% was% superior% to% uti'possidetis.%Nevertheless,%even%though%there%are%obvious%practical%difficulties%in%organising%a%fair%territorial%referendum%it%cannot%be%denied%that%in%contemporary%international%law%a%referendum% probably% still% provides% the% best% normative% basis% for% the% rearrangement% of%territories.%%Significance#of#granting#Armenian#passports#to#the#people#of#Nagorno1Karabakh#!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!48%Law%on%Secession%(n%20)%Art.%3%49%Law%on%Secession%(n%20)!50%de%Waal%(n%11)%

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There%was%a%long%delay%in%Nagorno7Karabakh%in%adopting%the%Constitution51%and%after%the%referendum%on% independence,% % it%was%15%years%before% this%Constitution%was%approved%through%another%referendum%on%10th%December%2006.%In%the%Constitution,%Art.%1%clearly%states% that% “NKR”% is% “a% sovereign,% democratic,% rule7of7law% based% and% social% state”.%Furthermore,%Art.%14%(2)%of%this%Constitution%maintains%that%NKR%citizenship%is%both%granted%and% rescinded% according% to% relevant% legislation.% However,% according% to% Kolsto% and%Blakkisrud,% in% practice% no% separate%Nagorno7Karabakh% citizenship% exists% because% the%citizens%of%NKR%all%have%Armenian%passports.52%Little% research%as% far%as% is%known%has%been%done%on%this%issue,%but%these%passports%would%appear%to%offer%the%advantage%to%the%people%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%of%travelling%abroad,%because%since%2000,%they%were%unable%to%use% their% old%Soviet%passports% to% travel%outside%Armenia.%However,% a% specific% code%inside%the%passport%reveals%that%they%are%residents%in%NKR%and%are%subsequently%ineligible%for%the%same%benefits%and%services%provided%to%citizens%of%the%Republic%of%Armenia.53%A%Nagorno7Karabakh% passport% is% virtually% identical% to% an% Armenian% passport% and% the%contents% are% written% in% both% Armenian% and% English.% However,% due% to% the% status% of%Nagorno7Karabakh,%such%a%passport%is%not%legally%recognised,%either%by%Azerbaijan%or%the%international%community,%and%can%only%be%used%within%the%borders%of%Nagorno7Karabakh.%According% to% Makaryan,% there% were% several% amendments% to% both% the% Constitution% of%Armenia%in%2005%and%its%Law%on%Citizenship%in%2007%subsequent%to%which%Armenia%began%to% recognise%dual%citizenship,%which% is%still%based%on% the% ius'sanguinis%principle.54%The%Constitution%of% the%separatist%NKR,%which% is%a%part%of% the%Republic%of%Azerbaijan,%also%recognises% the% principle% of% dual% citizenship. 55 %However,% this% Constitution% % was% not%recognised%by%Azerbaijani%authorities.%

Hence,%by%granting%Armenian%passports%to%‘citizens’%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%which%is%under%the%jurisdiction%of%Azerbaijan,%the%Armenians%are%contravening%the%main%principles%of%the%1975%Helsinki%Act%listed%in%the%Art.%1%(a),%namely%Sovereign%equality,%respect%for%the%rights%inherent%in%sovereignty%(I),%Inviolability%of%frontiers%(III),%Territorial%integrity%of%States%(IV),%and%Non7intervention%in%internal%affairs%(VI).56%

It%was%previously%stated%that%the%ultimate%aim%of%NKR%was%to%gain%international%recognition%as%an%independent%state%but%to%date%no%claim%has%yet%been%submitted%that%an%independent%Nagorno7Karabakh% nation% exists.% Therefore,% it% is% impossible% to% talk% about% separate%Karabakh%nationality%as%its%people%are%all%treated%as%an%integral%part%of%an%all7Armenian%nation.%By%issuing%passports,%this%reinforces%the%idea%that%Nagorno7Karabakh%is%linked%to%a% greater% Armenian% nation.% As% Babayan% stated:% “Karabakh% is% the% national% idea% of%Armenia” 57 %and% is% able% to% enjoy% the% support% of% an% affluent% and% generous% overseas%diaspora.%Other% examples% of% this% symbolic% nation7building% have% been% witnessed,% for% example,%separate%NKR%postage%stamps%and%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%flag%although%being%tricolour%with%the%same%colours%as%the%Armenian%flag,%actually%has%a%zigzag%shaped%piece%cut7off%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!51%The%Constitution%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%Republic%(NKR)%of%December%10,%2006%<www.president.nkr.am/en/constitution>%accessed%29%August%2015%%52%Pal%Kolsto%and%Helge%Blakkisrud,%‘Living%with%Non7Recognition:%State7%and%Nation7building%in%South%Caucasian%Quasi7states’%(2008)%Europe7Asia%Studies%Vol.%60,%no%3,%483,%501%53%Ibid%54%Shushanik%Makaryan,%‘Country%Report:%Armenia’%(2013)%EUDO%Citizenship%Observatory,%24%<http://eudo7citizenship.eu/docs/CountryReports/Armenia.pdf>%accessed%29%August%2015%55%NKR%Constitution%(n%51)%56%Conference%on%Security%and%Co7operation%in%Europe%Final%Act%(August%1%1975)%<https://www.osce.org/mc/39501?download=true>%accessed%29%August%2015%57%Kolsto%and%Blakkisrud%(n%52),%Interview%with%Davit%Babayan,%Professor%of%Political%Science,%Artsakh%State%University%(Stepanakert,%12%September%2006)%

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on% the% right% hand% side.%On% the% other% hand,% NKR% has% no% separate% currency% but% uses%Armenian%national%currency.58%%An#assessment#of# the#Nagorno1Karabakh#conflict#with#reference#to# international#law#and#UN#resolutions#Any%detailed% inspection%of% the%conflict% in%Nagorno7Karabakh% is%not% feasible%without%an%analysis% of% the% relevant% international% law% principles,% which% cover% the% contradiction%between% the% two% principles% of% self7determination% of% peoples% and% territorial% integrity% of%states.%Subsequent%to%World%War%II,% the%right%to%self7determination%started%to%transform%from%a%mere%political%concept%into%a%legal.%By%referring%to%the%UN%Charter%Covenant%on%Civil%and%Political%Rights% (1976)59%together%with% the%Covenant% on%Economic%Cultural% and%Social%Rights%of%197660%the%principle%of%self7determination% is%clearly%demonstrated.% %However,%these%particular%documents%do%not%explain% in%detail% the%right% to%self7determination%as%a%result% of% which% the% UN% General% Assembly% pledged% to% resolve% this% problem.% The% UN%General% Assembly% resolutions% namely% (1514% (XV),61%1541% (XV)62%and% 2625% (XXV)63)%clearly%established%the%right%to%self7determination%but%only%in%the%context%of%decolonisation%and% ICJ% concurred% that% the% right% to% self7determination% should% be% incorporated% into%international% law.% However,% resolutions% 1514% and% 2625% differ% significantly% on% close%inspection.%In%Resolution%2625,%it%declares%that%any%right%to%self7determination%is%a%right%which%must%be%applied%to%all%peoples%and%is%the%legal%requirement%which%must%be%followed%by%all%states.64%According%to%the%General%Assembly%Resolution%1514%(XV)%“The%Declaration%on%Granting%Independence%to%Colonial%Countries%and%Peoples”,%Abs.%6:%

%“Any%attempt%aimed%at%the%partial%or%total%disruption%of%the%national%unity%and%the%territorial%integrity%of%a%country%in%incompatible%with%the%purposes%and%principles%of%the%Charter%of%the%United%Nations”.65%

%There%would%appear% to%be%a%manifest%contradiction%between%the%principles%of% territorial%integrity%and%self7determination%raising%the%question%of%which%principle%predominates.%Most%legal%documents%stipulate%the%right%to%self7determination%but%emphasise%concomitantly%the%inviolability%of%borders%and%the%territorial%integrity%of%several%states.%Consequently,%tension%often%arises%between%the%disputing%states%over%the%character%and%nature%of% the%right% to%self7determination,%which%often%causes%tension%among%the%states.%Resolution%1514%would%suggest%that%the%provisions%only%apply%to%the%‘peoples’%or%‘colonies’.%However,%there%are%no%colonies%anymore.%On%the%other%hand,%according%to%Clause%1%of%Resolution%2625,%this%self7determination%is%stipulated%%as%a%fundamental%right%for%all%peoples.66%It%would%therefore%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!58%Kolsto%and%Blakkisrud%(n%52)%

59%International%Covenant%on%Civil%and%Political%Rights%adopted%by%UNGA%on%19%December%1966,%came%into%force%on%23%March%1976%<https://treaties.un.org/doc/Publication/UNTS/Volume%999/volume79997I7146687English.pdf>%accessed%29%August%2015%

60%International%Covenant%on%Economic,%Social%and%Cultural%Rights%adopted%UNGA%Res%2200A%(XXI)%of%16%December%1966,%came%into%force%on%3%January%1976%<http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/CESCR.aspx>%accessed%29%August%2015%61%UNGA%Res%1514%(XV)%(14%December%1960)%UN%Doc%A/%RES/%1514%(XV)%%62%UNGA%Res%1541%(XV)%(15%Deecember%1960)%UN%Doc%A/%RES/%1541%(XV)%63%UNGA%‘Report%from%the%Sixth%Committee%A/%8082'%(24%October%1970)%UN%Doc%A/%RES/%25/%2625%64%Christian%Tomuschat,%Volkerrecht%(Baden7Baden%2001)%81%cited%in%M.%Mammadov,%‘Legal'Aspects'of'the'NagornoIGarabagh'Conflict’'(Winter%2006)%CRIA%Vol.%1%(1)%14,%18%65%UNGA%Res%(n%61)%66%UNGA%Res%(n%63)%

! 13!

appear%that%it%is%Resolution%2625,%which%could%serve%as%the%only%provision%to%which%the%Karabakh% Armenians%might% refer.% Secession% is% not% prohibited% under% Resolution% 2625%pursuant% to% an% internal% conflict. 67 %Hence% when% examining% this% resolution% from% the%perspective%of%the%right%to%self7determination%as%a%human%right,%it%can%be%concluded%that%there%is%no%prohibition%of%secession%as%an%action%contrary%to%international%law.%Resolution%2625,%concerned%with%the%protection%of%the%territorial%integrity%of%states,%infers%a%cautionary%note% that% territorial% integrity% is%only%protected%provided%the%right% to%self7determination% is%respected%and%there% is%a%government,%which%represents%the%entire%people%belonging%to%that%state.68%However,% in% the%case%of%Nagorno7Karabakh,% the%Armenian%population%had%not%been%subjected%%to%any%kind%of%human%rights%violation%and%therefore%their%behaviour%would% appear% to% demonstrate% separatist% characteristics.% It% is% noteworthy% that% in% the%Regional%Council%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%110%MPs%out%of%a%total%of%140,%were%of%Armenian%nationality%because%of%the%predominant%Armenian%population%in%the%region.69%It%should%also%be%mentioned% that%Nagorno7Karabakh%was% the%only%autonomous% region% in% the%USSR,%represented%in%the%Supreme%Soviet%of%Azerbaijan%SSR%by%deputy%chairman.%According%to%this% author,% the% autonomous% region% was% represented% in% the% Supreme% Soviet% of% the%Azerbaijan%SSR%by%ten%Armenian%MPs.%However,%Armenians%comprised%only%2%%of%the%total% population% of% Azerbaijan. 70 %Therefore,% it% is% important% to% draw% attention% to% the%difference%between%the%right%of%minorities%and%peoples,%because%in%all% international% law%documents%the%right%to%self7determination%is%only%granted%to%‘peoples’.%%Self1determination:#minorities#and#peoples#As%already%mentioned,% the%right% to%self7%determination%according% to% international% law% is%only%granted%to%peoples,%which%they%define%as%‘any%group%living%in%the%territory%of%any%state%and% forming% the%majority% of% its% population’.% In% these% circumstances,% these% people% are%entitled%to%self7determination%and%the%possibility%of%establishing%their%own%state.%%According%to%Art.%27%of%the%Covenant%on%Civil%and%Political%Rights:%

%“In%those%states%in%which%ethnic,%religious%or%linguistic%minorities%exist,%persons%belonging%to%such%

minorities%shall%not%be%denied%the%right,%in%community%with%other%members%of%their%group,%to%enjoy%their%own%culture%to%profess%and%practice%their%own%religion%or%to%use%their%own%language”.71%

%However,% this%right% to%self7determination% is%not%granted%to%minorities%and%the%Armenian%population%living%in%Azerbaijan%was%an%ethnic%minority.%According%to%international%law,%this%means%they%can%participate%in%all%spheres%of%public%life%of%Azerbaijan%such%as%economic,%political,%social%and%religious%but%they%cannot%carry%out%any%activity,%which%endangers%either%the%sovereignty%or%the%territorial%integrity%of%the%Republic%of%Azerbaijan.%%The% question% arises% as% to% whether% the% Karabakh% Armenians% can% be% considered% as%peoples%for%the%purposes%of%the%right%to%self7determination.%In%international%law%there%does%not% appear% to% be%an%explicit% definition% of% ‘people’.%However,% the%Armenian% side% in% the%conflict%frequently%refers%to%the%right%of%self7determination%of%the%Karabakh%Armenians%in%order%to%justify%these%territorial%claims%to%Azerbaijan.%%However,%as%previously%mentioned,%international%law%does%not%grant%self7determination%to%groups%or%minorities.%This%point%was%stressed%by%Eide,%a%UN%special% reporter% (1996),%who%emphasised% that% the%claim%of%all%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!67%Ibid!68%Ibid%69%Otto%Luchterhandt,%Das%Recht%der%Berg7Karabaghs%Armenier%auf%Selbstbestimmung%aus%völkerrechtlicher%Sicht%(Hamburg%1992)%13%cited%in%M.%Mammadov,%‘Legal'Aspects'of'the'NagornoIGarabagh'Conflict’%(Winter%2006)%CRIA%Vol.%1%(1)%14,%19720%70%Ibid!71%Covenant%on%Civil%and%Political%Rights%(n%59)%Art.%27%

! 14!

people%of%all%territories%having%the%right%to%self7determination,%is%negative.72%If%as%according%to%Kelsen,%we%interpret%the%term%“people”%as%a%state,73%then%there%are%no%legal%grounds%for%the%self7determination%of%the%Karabakh%Armenians.%An%attempt%was%made%by%the%separatist%regime%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%to%quote%‘remedial%theory’%as%a%justification%for%the%secession%of%minority%groups%in%response%to%human%rights%violations.%This%vague%term%is%not%applicable%to%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict%since%there%is%no%evidence%to%confirm%any%violation%of%rights%of%the%Armenian%population%of%Nagorno7Karabakh.% In% fact,% the% Armenian% population% enjoyed% a% wide% range% of% rights% and%freedoms. 74 %Such% broad% rights% and% freedoms% along% with% its% representation% in% the%government% of% the% Azerbaijan% SSR% are% clear% evidence% of% the% right% to% internal% self7determination.%Therefore,%it%can%be%strongly%argued%that%no%discrimination%took%place%in%NKAO%by%the%central%Azerbaijani%authorities.%Even%Arutyunyan%in%1990%reported%that%the%former%leader%of%the%“Nagorno7Karabakh%Republic”%Robert%Kocharyan%who%later%became%the%President%of%Armenia%confirmed%that%Karabakh%Armenians%were%not%living%in%difficult%conditions% either% politically% or% socio7economically.% He% argued% that% it% was% “something%unexplainable%drove%Karabakh%Armenians%to%independence”.75%This%argument%is%further%supported%by%de%Waal%who%emphasised%that%the%Armenian%campaign%had%been%planned,%well%in%advance,%and%the%increased%militarisation%of%the%Karabakh%Armenians%was%all%part%of%such%a%plan.76%On%the%19th%September%2001,%the%Council%of%Europe%in%response%to%a%question%about%the%recognition%of%Azerbaijan’s%territorial%integrity%by%Armenia%explicitly%stated%that%the%rights%to%self7determination%should%comply%with%all%the%principles%of%international%law%including%the% principle% of% territorial% integrity. 77 %This% can% only% be% exercised% through% peaceful%negotiations%without%any%military%or%coercive%force%being%employed%leading%to%the%illegal%occupation%of%territories.%The%Council%of%Europe%thus%was%the%second%organisation%after%the%United%Nations%Security%Council,%which%confirmed%that%the%use%of%force%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%case%is%totally%unacceptable%for%the%exercise%of%external%self7determination%by%Armenians% through% the% violation% of% Azerbaijan’s% territorial% integrity.% The% Karabakh%Armenians% had% not% even% attempted% a% peaceful% negotiation% of% their% right% to% self7determination% with% the% central% Azerbaijan% authorities% but% in% contrast,% had% chosen% the%military%way%to%secede%from%Azerbaijan.%From%the%outset%of%the%conflict,%Azerbaijan%has%preferred%a%denial%policy%by%non7recognising%Nagorno7Karabakh%as%a%party%to%the%conflict%and%rejected%all%arguments,%which%favour%the%external%self7determination%of%the%Karabakh%Armenians.%Azerbaijan%continues%to%demand%the%liberation%of%the%occupied%territories%and%the%negotiation%of%the%status%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%on%the%condition%that%it%preserves%its%territorial% integrity.% Azerbaijan% relies% heavily% on% the% principles% of% international% law% and%recognition%of%its%territorial%integrity%and%boundaries%by%the%international%community.%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!72%Asbjorn%Eide,%‘Territorial%Integrity%of%States,%Minority%Protection%and%Guarantee%for%Autonomy%Arrangements:%Approaches%and%Roles%of%the%United%Nations’%in%UniDem%Seminar%(Ed),%Local%Self7Government,%Territorial%Integrity%and%Protection%of%Minorities%(Lausanne,%COE%Publishing%25727%April%1996)%33%73%Hans%Kelsen,%Recent'Trends'in'the'Law'of'the'United'Nations:'A'Supplement'to'the'‘Law'of'the'United'Nations:'A'Critical'Analysis'of'its'Fundamental'Problems’%(London:%Stevens%and%Sons%1951)%51753%74%Farhad%Mirzayev,%‘Azerbaijan%on%the%Crossroads:%Legal%Evaluation%of%the%Contemporary%Territorial%Issues%Self7Determination%v%Territorial%Integrity’:%Summer%University’s%Best%Papers’%Digest%(Fribourg,%University%of%Fribourg%Press%September%2005)%53772%75%V.%Arutyunyan,%Interview%with%Robert%Kocharyan%(10%January%1994)%Events'in'NagornoIKarabakh:'Chronicle,'February'1988'–'January'1989'Vol.%V%(Yerevan,%Armenian%SSR%Academy%of%Sciences%Publishing%House%1990)%(In%Russian)%271,%cited%in%F.%Mirzayev,%Uti'Possidetis'v'SelfIDetermination:'The'Lessons'of'the'PostISoviet'Practice'(Submitted%thesis%for%the%University%of%Leicester%School%of%Law%2014)%137%%76%de%Waal%(n%11)%77%Parliamentary%Assembly%of%the%Council%of%Europe%(PACE)%(Decision%of%Ministerial%Council)%Doc%(September%24,%2001)%<http://garabagh.net/content_144_en.html>%accessed%30%August%2015!

! 15!

%UN#Security#Council#Resolutions#violated#by#Armenia#Most%of%the%grounding%principles%of%international%law%concerning%the%principle%of%territorial%integrity% are% reflected% in% the%UN%Charter% (1945)78%and%are% therefore%binding% for% all% the%states%in%the%world.%The%main%aim%of%the%UN%Charter%was%not%to%repeat%the%horrors%of%World%War%II%and%to%prevent%any%aggressive%or%occupational%wars%of%states%against%each%other.%A%further%development%of%this%principle%is%linked%to%the%1975%Helsinki%Final%Act%or%Helsinki%Accords%of%the%then%Conference%for%Security%and%Cooperation%in%Europe%(CSCE)%which%was%a%predecessor%of%the%Organisation%for%Security%and%Cooperation%in%Europe%(OSCE)%established%under%the%Paris%Charter.%Thirty7five%states%signed%The%Helsinki%Final%Act%with%the%intention%of%improving%the%relations%between%the%West%and%the%Communist%bloc.79%In%%Art.%1%(IV)%the%Act%states:#%

“The%participating%States%will%respect%the%territorial%integrity%of%each%of%the%participating%States.%Accordingly,%they%will%refrain%from%any%action%inconsistent%with%the%purposes%and%principles%of%the%Charter%of%the%UN%against%the%territorial%integrity,%political%independence%or%the%unity%of%any%participating%State,%and%in%particular%of%any%such%action%constituting%a%threat%or%use%of%force.%The%participating%States%will%likewise%refrain%from%making%each%other’s%territory%the%object%of%military%occupation%or%other%direct%or%indirect%measures%of%force%in%contravention%of%international%law,%or%the%object%of%acquisition%by%means%of%such%measures%or%the%threat%of%them.%No%such%occupation%or%acquisition%will%be%recognised%as%legal”.80%

%This%document%seemed%to%be%an%important%step%towards%reducing%the%tensions%of%the%Cold%War%but%also%could%be%interpreted%as%a%boost%for%the%Soviet%Union%at%the%time%because%of%the% clauses% concerning% the% inviolability% of% national% frontiers% together% with% respect% for%territorial%integrity.%This%was%perceived%as%consolidating%the%territorial%gains%of%the%USSR%in%Eastern%Europe%following%WWII.%In%Art.%1%(VIII)%of%the%Helsinki%Final%Act%it%mentions%equal%rights%and%self7determination%of%peoples.%It%has%endorsed%the%principle%of%right%to%self7determination%of%peoples.81%%“The%participating%States%will%respect%the%equal%rights%of%peoples%and%their%right%to%self7determination,%

acting%in%all%times%in%conformity%with%the%purposes%and%principles%of%the%Charter%of%the%United%Nations%and%with%relevant%norms%of%international%law,%including%those%relating%to%territorial%integrity%of%States”.82%

%However,%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%case,%it%was%never%a%colony%and%in%fact%the%Armenian%population%residing%there%is%a%national%minority%on%the%Republic%of%Azerbaijan%territory%and%therefore% not% any% kind% of% colonial% people.% In% accordance% with% international% law,% any%national% minority% is% not% granted% the% right% to% self7determination% in% the% broader% sense%because%their%“nation”%(people)%has%already%exercised%this%right%to%self7determination%in%their%own%territory%that%in%this%case%is%the%Republic%of%Armenia.%Hence,%the%principle%of%the%right%of%peoples%to%self7determination%from%the%legal%point%of%view%cannot%be%applied%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict.%Armenia% has% also% put% forward% another% flawed% argument% about% the% recognition% of% the%separatist%entity%in%NK.%The%territories%occupied%by%Armenia%include%not%only%NK%but%seven%other% regions% of% Azerbaijan,% Kelbajar,% Lachin,% Kubatli,% Jebrail,% Zangelan,% Agdam% and%Fuzuli.%Hence,%it%is%unclear%where%the%separatists%would%draw%borders.%According%%to%Art.%1%of%the%Montevideo%Convention%(1933)83:%%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!78%UN%Charter%(n%1)%79%Helsinki%Act%(n%56)!80%Ibid%81%Helsinki%Act%(n%56)%82%Ibid%83%Convention%on%Rights%and%Duties%of%States%(inter7American)%(26%December%1933)%<http://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/intam03.asp>%accessed%30%August%2015%

! 16!

“The%State%as%a%personal%international%law%should%possess%the%following%qualifications:%a)%a%permanent%populationw%b)%a%defined%territoryw%c)%government%and%d)%capacity%to%enter%into%relations%with%other%states”.84%

%As%regards%Nagorno7Karabakh,%all%of%these%claims%are%groundless%because%it%is%unclear%where%clearly%defined%borders%are.%The%claim%to%a%permanent%population%is%impossible%as%it%does%not% include%the%Azerbaijani%population%who%were%forced%out%of% these%territories.%There%is%no%government,%since%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%is%administered%by%the%Republic%of%Armenia.% Finally,% not% a% single% state% worldwide% including% Armenia% recognises% this%separatist%entity.%All%of%the%above%points%according%to%the%principles%of%international%law%have%been%refuted%by%the%Armenian%scholar%Avakian,%who%asserted%erroneously%that%Nagorno7Karabakh%can%be%considered%an%independent%state.85%This%author%maintains%that%Nagorno7Karabakh%is%capable%of%“providing%security%and%normal%living%conditions”%to%its%citizens%by%exercising%sovereign%jurisdiction%on%a%defined%territory%with%its%border.86%The% international% community% has% condemned% the% aggression% of% Armenia% and% its%occupation% of% Azerbaijani% territories% many% times% and% the% UN% Security% Council% has%demanded%that%Armenian%armed%forces%should%immediately%withdraw%from%the%Azerbaijani%territories% they% have% occupied% in% resolutions% 822,87%853,88 %87489%and% 88490 %of% 1993.%Overall,% in% these% four% resolutions% the% international% community% appear% to% believe% that%Azerbaijan%was%a%victim%of%aggression.%In%UN%Security%Council%Resolution%822,91%adopted%unanimously%on%the%30th%April%1993,%concern%was%voiced%about%the%deteriorating%relations%between%Armenia%and%Azerbaijan%mentioning%the%escalation%of%armed%attacks%and%the%serious%humanitarian%situation.%The%Security%Council%demanded%a%secession%of%all%hostilities%and%expected%Armenian%occupied%forces% to% withdraw% from% the% Kelbajar% region.% Both% parties% were% reminded% of% their%obligations%under%international%humanitarian%role.%In%Resolution%853,92%the%UN%Security%Council%on%the%29th%July%1993%reaffirmed%the%previous%Resolution%822%and%repeated%its%concern%over%the%deteriorating%situation.%This%Resolution%demanded%Armenia%to%withdraw%its%occupying%forces%from%Agdam%and%all%other%occupied%territories%of%Azerbaijan.%This%Resolution%853%demonstrates%that%the%UN%Security%Council%reaffirms%the%territorial%integrity%of%Azerbaijan.%The% next% resolution% was% on% the% 14th% October% 1993% and%was%Resolution% 874.93%Whilst%reiterating%its%previous%resolutions%(822%and%853)%this%Resolution%concentrated%on%human%suffering%and%humanitarian%issues%and%a%need%for%a%ceasefire.%This%Resolution%was%the%first%one%to%demand%from%both%states%the%refraining%from%any%hostile%actions,%which%might%endanger%the%whole%security%framework%in%the%region.%In% Resolution% 884,94%which% was% the% fourth% resolution% on% this% matter% the% UN% Security%Council%condemned%the%attacks%on%civilians%in%the%territory%of%Azerbaijan.%This%was%the%first% time%that%the%UN%council%had%openly%acknowledged%the%damage%committed%by%the%occupying%Armenian%force%to%Azerbaijan’s%territory%and%to%the%civilians.%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!84%Ibid%85%Shahen%Avakian,%Nagorno7Karabakh:%Legal%Aspects%(2005),%Professor%of%Law,%French%University%of%Armenia%17719%86%Ibid%87%UNSC%Res%822%(30%April%1993)%UN%Doc%S/%RES/%822%<http://www.un.org/Docs/scres/1993/scres93.htm>%accessed%30%August%2015%%88%UNSC%Res%853%(29%July%1993)%UN%Doc%S/%RES/%853%89%UNSC%Res%874%(14%October%1993)%UN%Doc%S/%RES/%874%90%UNSC%Res%884%(12%November%1993)%UN%Doc%S/%RES/%884%91%UNSC%Res%(n%87)%92%UNSC%Res%(n%88)%93%UNSC%Res%(n%89)%94%UNSC%Res%(n%90)%

! 17!

However,% none% of% these% resolutions% was% implemented% or% enforced.% While% these%resolutions%formed%the%core%of%the%legal%documents%dealing%with%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict,% the% international% community% expressed% its% opinion%many% times% in% legally% non7binding%documents%such%as%the%UN%General%Assembly%Resolution%62/243%of%2008.95%This%Resolution%called%‘The%Situation%in%the%Occupied%Territories%of%Azerbaijan’%was%adopted%on%March%14th%2008%in%the%UN%General%Assembly%and%was%therefore%the%fifth%UN%document%about%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict.%This%document%reaffirmed%the%territorial%integrity%of%Azerbaijan%and%the%violations%of%international%humanitarian%law%by%Armenia.%This%was%the%first%time%that%concern%was%openly%voiced%and%recognised%how%necessary%it%was%to%provide%secure% conditions% of% life% for% both% the% Armenian% and% Azerbaijani% communities% in% the%Nagorno7Karabakh% region.% Moreover,% it% called% upon%member7states% of% the% UN% not% to%recognise% the%present% situation%with% the%occupation%of%Azerbaijani% territories% as% lawful%under% any% circumstances.% Clearly,% this% Resolution% was% an% important% step% for% the%international%community%in%recognising%the%breach%of%international%law%by%Armenia%which%had%been%disregarded%for%many%years%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict.%In% 2005,% the% Parliamentary% Assembly% of% the% Council% of% Europe% (PACE)% adopted%Resolution%1416%entitled% ‘The%conflict% over% the%Nagorno7Karabakh% region%dealt% by% the%OSCE%Minsk%Conference’96%which%also%recognised%that%Azerbaijani%territories%were%under%occupation%by%armed%forces%of%Armenia%and%separatists%were%still%controlling%Nagorno7Karabakh.%It%clearly%supported%Azerbaijan’s%position%on%the%urgent%need%for%the%liberation%of%these%occupied%territories.%This%Resolution%also%reaffirmed%that%the%independence%and%secession%of%the%original%territory%from%a%state%can%only%be%achieved%through%a%peaceful%process%based%on%the%democratic%support%of%the%inhabitants%of%such%a%territory%and%not%as%a%result%of%an%armed%conflict.%This%Resolution%is%extremely%important%as%it%reinforces%the%previous% four% resolutions% of% the% UN% Security% Council% by% urging% parties% to% comply,%particularly%Armenia.%It%restates%that%both%Azerbaijan%and%Armenia%are%signatory%parties%to%the%Charter%of%the%United%Nations97%and%therefore%according%to%Art.%93%para%1%of%this%Charter,98%ipso'facto%parties%to%the%statutes%of%the%ICJ.%A%little%later,%the%EU%expressed%its%position%on%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%situation%by%adopting%the%European%Parliament%Resolution%of%20th%May%2010%which%expressed%a%need%for%an%EU%strategy%for%the%South%Caucasus.99%By%demanding%the%Armenian%forces%to%withdraw%from%all%the%territories%they%had%occupied%of%Azerbaijan,%this%Resolution%clearly%demonstrates%the%position%of%the%EU%as%regards%the%occupation%of%Azerbaijani%territories%and%Armenia’s%violations%of%international%law.%Furthermore,%this%Resolution%requests%the%deployment%of%international%forces%with%respect%to%the%UN%Charter%in%order%to%provide%the%security%of%the%population% of% Nagorno7Karabakh% and% allow% the% displaced% persons% to% return% to% their%homes.%Unfortunately,%no%such%reforms%have%occurred%until%today.%It%was%not%only%EU%that%recognised%Azerbaijan’s% just%position%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%Conflict% but% also% in% the% Muslim% world% the% Organisation% of% Islamic% Cooperation% (OIC)%adopted%a%Resolution%on%the%‘Aggression%of%the%Republic%of%Armenia%against%the%Republic%of% Azerbaijan’. 100 %During% the% Islamic% Summit% Conference% in% 2008,% this% Resolution%reaffirms% the% commitment% by% all% member7states% to% respect% the% territorial% integrity,%sovereignty% and% political% independence% of% the% Republic% of% Azerbaijan.% It% particularly%mentions%the%illegal%transfer%of%Armenian%settlers%to%those%occupied%territories%unlike%all%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!95%UNGA%Res%62/%243%(25%April%2008)%UN%Doc%A/%RES/%62/%243%<http://www.un.org/en/ga/62/resolutions.shtml>%accessed%30%August%2015%96%PACE%Res%1416%(25%January%2005)%<http://assembly.coe.int/nw/xml/XRef/Xref7XML2HTML7en.asp?fileid=17289&lang=en>%accessed%30%August%2015%97%UN%Charter%(n%1)%98%Ibid%99%European%Parliament%Res%(20%May%2010)%Doc%(2009/2216(INI))%100%Organisation%of%Islamic%Cooperation%(OIC)%Res%No.%10/117P%(IS)%(13714%March%2008)!

! 18!

the%previously%mentioned%resolutions.%This%OIC%Resolution%upholds%these%actions%against%Azerbaijani%civilians,%in%the%occupied%Azerbaijani%territories,%as%crimes%against%humanity.%Overall,% it% is% this% OIC% Resolution% that% has% proved% to% be% the% most% comprehensive% in%demonstrating%the%total%range%of%issues%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict%and%probably%the%most%adequate%in%terms%of%international%law.%#Significance#of#Chiragov&and&Others&v.&Armenia#case#(16th#June#2015)#This%violation%of%human% rights%was%expressed%by%Azerbaijan%and% the%applicants% in% the%Chiragov'and'Others' v.'Armenia% case.101%Azerbaijan%produced%a%number%of% facts% and%arguments%in%the%Chiragov%case%demonstrating%that%Armenia%clearly%exercises%full%control%over%Nagorno7Karabakh%and%has%stationed% its%soldiers% in% the%occupied% territories.%The%judgement%on%the%Chiragov%case%and%similarly%the%Sargsyan'v.'Azerbaijan%case102%were%only%declared%by%the%European%Court%of%Human%Rights%(ECtHR)%on%the%16th%June%2015%and%will%be%discussed%in%more%detail%later%in%this%paper.%Even% NATO% in% its% Chicago% Summit% Declaration% on% 20th% May% 2012103%mentioned% the%international%law%issue%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict.%It%clearly%sent%a%message%about%the%recognition%of%territorial%integrity%of%Azerbaijan%in%paragraph%47:%%

“We%remain%committed%in%our%support%of%the%territorial%integrity,%independence%and%sovereignty%of%Armenia,%Azerbaijan,%Georgia%and%Moldova%and%will%also%continue%to%support%efforts%towards%a%peaceful%settlement%of%these%regional%conflicts,%based%upon%these%principles%and%the%norms%of%international%law,%the%

UN%Charter%and%the%Helsinki%Final%Act”.104%%

Interestingly%these%principles%mentioned%by%NATO%do%not%include%the%self7determination%of%peoples%which%is%usually%used%by%Armenia%as%its%main%argument%as%a%justification%for%its%position% in% the% Nagorno7Karabakh% conflict.% This% could% imply% that% NATO% supports% the%rightful%position%of%Azerbaijan.%Having%taken%all%these%facts%into%account%in%the%situation%in%Nagorno7Karabakh,%one%has%to%question%what%the%reasons%are%as%to%why%international%law%appears%to%have%failed.%There%would% appear% to% be% a% lack% of% political% will% of% particular% states% to% follow% the% norms% of%international%law%probably%because%of%the%blurring%of%the%definitions.%%Failure#of#international#humanitarian#law#in#the#Nagorno1Karabakh#conflict#The%recent%judgement%on%the%case%of%Chiragov'and'Others'v.'Armenia105%has%established%that%it%was%the%Republic%of%Armenia%and%not%‘Nagorno7Karabakh%Republic’%(NKR)%which%is%the% party% to% the% conflict.% This% section% of% the% paper# will% discuss% how% international%humanitarian%law%has%failed%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict.%The%initial%dispute%between%Azerbaijan%and% its%citizens%of%Armenian%origin% in%Nagorno7Karabakh,%but%supported%by%Armenians% living% in%what%was% then% the%Armenian%SSR,% can%be%defined%as%an% internal%armed%conflict.%As%such,%it%was%governed%by%the%provisions%of%Art.%3%common%to%the%four%Geneva%Conventions%(GCs)%of%1949.106%This%common%Art.%3%expressly%binds%all%parties%to%the%internal%conflict%including%insurgents%in%Nagorno7Karabakh%even%though%they%do%not%have%the%legal%right%as%private%individuals%within%the%national%territory%of%a%state%party%to%sign%the%GC%of%1949.%Any%occurrence%of%hostilities%between%Armenia%and%Azerbaijan%would%trigger%the%definition%of%‘international%armed%conflict’.%#

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!101%Chiragov%case%(n%4)%102%Sargsyan%v.%Azerbaijan%App%no%40167/06%(ECtHR%16%June%2015)%103%NATO%Chicago%Summit%Declaration%(20%May%2012)%para%47%104%Ibid%105%Chiragov%case%(n%4)%106%Article%3%common%to%the%four%GCs%(12%August%1949)%<https://www.icrc.org/ihl/WebART/3757590006>%accessed%30%August%2015%%

! 19!

The% judgement%on%16th%June%2015%of% the%ECtHR%Grand%Chamber% in% the%Chiragov'and'Others'v.'Armenia%case107%confirms%the%control%of%Armenia%in%Nagorno7Karabakh,%which%invalidates%Armenia’s%claim%to%the%national%liberation%of%the%Karabakh%Armenians.%Armenia%is% thus% deemed% responsible% for% the% occupation% of% Nagorno7Karabakh.% The% ECtHR%decision%has%put%an%end%to%Armenia’s%denial%of%its%own%responsibility%for%illegal%occupation%and%the%presence%of%armed%forces%in%the%territories%of%Azerbaijan.%As%such,%the%judgement%confirms%that%the%territories%in%question%are%‘occupied’%rather%than%‘liberated’%despite%what%Armenia% says.% International% law%does%not% outlaw%a% country% to% use% force% to% liberate% its%territories%occupied%by%another%state.%The%judgement%states:%%Art.%42%of%the%Regulations%concerning%the%Laws%and%Customs%of%War%on%Land,%The%Hague%18%October%

1907%defines%belligerent%occupation%as%follows:%“territory%is%considered%occupied%when%it%is%actually%placed%under%the%authority%of%the%hostile%army.%The%occupation%extends%only%to%the%territory%where%such%authority%

has%been%established%and%can%be%exercised”.108%%

The%case%of%Chiragov'and'Others'v.'Armenia%concerns%six%Azerbaijani%nationals%who%were%forced%to%leave%the%district%of%Lachin%in%Azerbaijan%by%Armenian%forces%during%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%War%and%since% then%have%been%unable% to% return% to% their%homes%and%denied%control%over%their%property.%The%Court%judged%that%Armenia%had%violated%Art.%1%of%Protocol%No.%1%(protection%of%property)%to%the%European%Convention%on%Human%Rights%(ECHR),%Art.%8%(right%to%respect%for%home%and%private%and%family%life)%and%Art.%13%(right%to%an%effective%remedy)%of%the%Convention.109%The%crucial%significance%of%this%case%is%that%the%defendant%is% the%Republic% of%Armenia% and% therefore%NKR% is% not% an% independent% or% autonomous%authority.%The%Court%reaffirmed%that%from%the%outset%of%the%conflict%the%Republic%of%Armenia%has%had%a%decisive%influence%over%the%NKR%and%the%surrounding%territories%including%the%district%of%Lachin.%Armenia%is%responsible%for%the%occupation%of%Nagorno7Karabakh.%The%ECtHR%decision%has%put%an%end%to%Armenia’s%denial%of% its%own%responsibility% for% illegal%occupation%and%military%presence%in%the%territories%of%Azerbaijan.%It%should%be%noted%that%the%applicants’%claim%under%Art.%14%(prohibition%of%discrimination)%was%rejected%within%the%meaning%of%the%Art.%14%of%the%Convention110%on%the%basis%of%ethnic%and%religious%affiliation.%On%the%other%hand,%on%the%same%day,%16th%June%2015,%the%Grand%Chamber%of%the%ECtHR%gave%its%ruling%on%the%Sargsyan'v.'Azerbaijan%case111%and%ruled%that%Azerbaijan%had%violated%Articles%1%(Protocol%No.%1%to%the%Convention),%8%and%13%of%the%ECHR.%Sargsyan%was%an%Armenian%refugee%from%Nagorno7Karabakh%who%had%been%forced%to%flee%his%home%in%Gulistan%in%1992%following%the%conflict%between%Armenia%and%Azerbaijan%over%Nagorno7Karabakh.%His%claims%that%his%rights%to%protection%of%property,%to%a%family%life,%and%to%an%effective%remedy%to%the%losses%he%had%incurred,%had%all%been%violated,%were%all%upheld%by% the%ECtHR.% %The%Court%confirmed% that%although%his%village%was% in%a%disputed%area,%Azerbaijan%had%jurisdiction%over%it%and%had%a%duty%to%take%alternative%measures%to%secure%Sargsyan’s%rights.%The%Court%considered%that%no%separate%issue%arose%under%Art.%14,%as%Mr%Sargsyan’s%complaints%under%Art.%14%amounted%essentially% to% the%same%complaints%which% the% Court% had% examined% under% Articles% 1% of% the% Protocol,% 8% and% 13% of% the%Convention.%This%is%a%successful%precedent%for%Armenian%refugees%and%IDPs%to%demand%compensation% from% Azerbaijan.% On% the% other% hand,% the% compensation% for% the%economically% stretched% Armenia% would% be% a% huge% economic% burden% in% the% future%

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!107%Chiragov%case%(n%4)%108%Ibid%109%Ibid%and%European%Convention%on%Human%Rights%(ECHR)%Art.%1%(Protocol%No.%1%to%the%Convention),%Art.%8,%13%of%the%Convention%<http://www.echr.coe.int/Documents/Convention_ENG.pdf>%accessed%30%August%2015%110%Chiragov%case%(n%4)w%ECHR%Convention%(n%109)%Art.%14%111%Sargsyan%case%(n%102)!

! 20!

compared%to%the%more%affluent%Azerbaijan.%However,%the%ECtHR’s%decision%was%on%the%right%of%persons%rather%than%on%the%conflict%itself%and%thus%can%have%no%political%influence%in%the%final%conflict%settlement.%The%ECtHR’s%verdicts%do%not%solve%the%problem%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%recognition%nor%refer%to%the%status%of%Nagorno7Karabakh,%but%demonstrate%the%importance% of% refugee% rights% and% conflict% resolution.% Both% cases% are% about% persons%displaced%by%the%conflict%and%had% lost% their%properties%and%how%they%must%now%receive%compensation.%Because%Armenia%and%Azerbaijan%both%intervened%as%third%parties%in%the%case%in%which%the%other%case%was%a%respondent%they%could%be%called%interstate%cases%by%proxy.%Both%of%these%cases%are%an%important%addition%to%the%Court’s%jurisprudence%as%there%are%thousands%of%other%applications%pending%before%the%Court%with%the%same%issues.%%

Armenia% is% a% party% to% both% the% GCs% of% 1949% and% Additional% Protocols% (AP)% whereas%Azerbaijan% only% ratified% the%GCs%but% not% the%APs.%Hence,%Armenia% should% have% been%bound%by%these%stricter%rules%than%Azerbaijan.%Some%rules%were%breached%by%Armenia%in%the%Nagorno7Karabakh%conflict%such%as%the%deportation%and%forcible%transfer%of%civilians%of%an%occupied% territory.%This% first% rule%was%breached%by%ethnic%cleansing% in% the%occupied%territories%of%Azerbaijan.%Secondly,%Armenia%arranged%the%continued%mass%settlement%of%its%civilians%to%take%up%residence%on%occupied%territory,%which%is%contrary%to%Art.%85%(4)%(a)%of%Protocol%I.112%This%was%a%grave%breach%of%the%Protocol%as%is%discussed%in%the%‘Case%of%Major%War%Criminals’%in%1946%of%the%International%Military%Tribunal%(IMT)%at%Nuremberg.113%%The#effects#of#Nagorno1Karabakh’s#unrecognised#status#While%the%residents%of%Nagorno7Karabakh%may%speak%Armenian,%the%unrecognised%status%of% Nagorno7Karabakh% separates% them% from% those% living% in% Armenia.% As% Yamskov114%highlights,%the%different%citizenship%status%means%that%they%are%not%entitled%or%eligible%for%the%same%benefits%as%those%in%Armenia.%As%an%example%of%this%is%students%who%aspire%to%pursue%higher%education%outside%of%Armenia%despite%it%being%virtually%impossible%to%fulfil%the%citizenship%and%residence%requirements%of%various%scholarships.%Students%in%Nagorno7Karabakh% who% possess% Armenian% passports% are% ineligible% on% the% basis% of% their%residency.115%This% example% clearly% indicates% that% Avakian’s% assertion% about% providing%“normal%living%conditions”%is%flawed.%Research% carried% out% by% Thompson% et' al 116 %into% healthcare% provision% in% Nagorno7Karabakh%has%revealed%that%living%in%an%unrecognised%state%means%that%for%many%residents%the% expected% provision% of% the% state% is% in% fact% very% lacking.% Healthcare% in% Nagorno7Karabakh% is% increasingly% important%because%about%25%per%cent%of% residents%are%above%retirement%age.117%Living%in%an%unrecognised%state%is%clearly%far%from%being%a%frozen%conflict%since%the%lives%of%the%residents%are%clearly%in%great%difficulty.%%Conclusion#

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!112%Protocol%Additional%to%the%Geneva%Conventions%of%12%August%1949,%and%relating%to%the%Protection%of%Victims%of%International%Armed%Conflicts%(Protocol%I)%of%8%June%1977%<https://www.icrc.org/ihl/intro/470>%accessed%30%August%2015%113%Jean7Marie%Henckaerts%and%Louise%Doswald7Beck,%Customary%International%Humanitarian%Law:%Vol.%I:%Rules%(CUP%2005)%114%Anatoly%Yamskov,%‘Ethnic%Conflict%in%the%Transcausasus%[sic]:%The%Case%of%Nagorno7Karabakh’%(Kluwer%Academic%Publishers%1991),%Theory%and%Society%20:%6317660%115%Ani%Matevosyan,%‘The%Bologna%Educational%System%in%Nagorno7Karabakh’,%The%Neutral%Zone%(April%15,%2011)%116%Michael%Thompson,%Alina%Dorian%and%Tsovinar%Harutyunyan,%‘Identifying%Priority%Healthcare%Trainings%in%Frozen%Conflict%Situations:%The%Case%of%Nagorno7Karabakh’,%Conflict%and%Health%4%(1):%21%(2010)%117%Ibid%

! 21!

This%research%paper%has%argued%that%neither%Soviet%law%nor%international%law%can%provide%the% right% to% secession% for% Karabakh% Armenians.% Moreover,% the% so7called% Nagorno7Karabakh%Republic%cannot%be%considered%as%an%entity,%which%has%already%gained%its%own%statehood,% because% the% Republic% of% Armenia% has% demonstrated% a% deep% and% illegal%involvement%in%the%occupation%of%Azerbaijani%territories.%From%all%the%evidence%provided,%Nagorno7Karabakh%continues%to%belong%to%the%Azerbaijan%Republic,%a%fact%which%should%be%respected%within%the%international%framework%of%conflict%resolution.%Despite% the% fact% that%Nagorno7Karabakh’s%belonging% to%Azerbaijan% is%confirmed%on% the%international% circuit% and%Armenia% is% blatantly% violating% international% law,% at% present% the%legal%status%is%merely%considered%the%subject%of%negotiation%rather%than%being%the%basis%with%which%to%start.%%Currently%these%negotiations%are%in%deadlock%because%the%real%issue%is%whether%there%should%be%new%boundaries%rather%than%where%these%should%run.%Although%the% principle% of% uti' possidetis% is% frequently% invoked% by% those% defending% national% and%territorial% unity,% this% principle% does%not% appear% to% supply% an%answer% to% the%question%of%‘whether’%in%the%case%of%Nagorno7Karabakh.%%Hence,%uti'possidetis%is%far%from%providing%the% perfect% solution.% It% can% be% a% suitable% mechanism% for% provisionally% determining%boundary%lines%in%the%event%of%secession,%but%in%this%case,%there%is%no%right%to%secession.%The%former%American%Ambassador%to%Azerbaijan,%Matthew%Bryza,%states%that%“Azerbaijan%is%losing%trust%in%the%ability%of%the%West%to%maintain%a%deterrent%or%a%peaceful%ceasefire”.118%Officials% in% Azerbaijan% feel% there% are% double% standards% over% self7determination% and%sovereignty.%They%debate%why%the%West%is%punishing%Russia%for%annexing%Crimea,%but%not%Armenia%for%similar%behaviour%in%Nagorno7Karabakh.%Ukraine%is%employing%force%to%restore%territorial%integrity,%which%generally%meets%the%approval%of%the%West,%yet%at%the%same%time%the%West%insists%on%peaceful%patience%from%Azerbaijan.%It%would%appear% that% this%current% intractable%situation%will%only%be%possibly% resolved%by%being%referred%to%an%impartial%institution%such%as%the%International%Court%of%Justice%since%the%danger%of%further%outbreaks%of%violence%are%ever%present.%% %

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!118%‘Nagorno7Karabakh:%A%Mountainous%Conflict’,%The%Economist%(6%September%2014)%<http://www.economist.com/node/21615631>%accessed%30%August%2015%

! 22!

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An#Analysis#of#the#Nagorno1Karabakh#Conflict#According#to#International#Law##

Appendix#The#Map#of#Nagorno1Karabakh#and#the#Armenian1controlled#Adjacent#

Administrative#Districts##

##‘Nagorno7Karabakh:%A%Mountainous%Conflict’,%The%Economist%(6%September%2014)%<http://www.economist.com/node/21615631>%accessed%13%March%2016#!