Azerbaijan on Wednesday condemned the speaker of Switzerland’s lower house of parliament for voicing support for the right to self-determination of Nagorno-Karabakh’s predominantly Armenian population.
“The people of Nagorno-Karabakh have the right to choose their destiny just like other peoples,” Dominique de Buman said during an official visit to Armenia on Tuesday. Addressing the Armenian parliament, he also called for a peaceful resolution of the Karabakh conflict.
Reacting to that statement, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry accused Buman of trying to “justify Armenian aggression against Azerbaijan.” A ministry spokesman, Hikmet Hajiyev, said he thus “inflicted damage” on efforts to end the Karabakh dispute.
According to Azerbaijani news agencies, Hajiyev also pointed to Buman’s “illegal” visit to Karabakh in 2012.
Buman, who was elected speaker of Switzerland’s National Council last November, travelled to the Armenian-populated territory together with another Swiss lawmaker. Baku sent a note of protest to the Swiss Foreign Ministry at the time.
Karabakh peace proposals made by the United States, Russia and France over the past decade have been based on a combination of the internationally recognized principles of self-determination and territorial integrity of states. The three mediating powers have repeatedly cited both principles in their joint statements on the Armenian-Azerbaijani disputes.