Seyran Ohanyan: Azerbaijani toponyms being used by Armenian authorities deliberately

Panorama, Armenia
Sept 15 2021

The Armenian opposition believes the Azerbaijani toponyms are being used by the Armenian authorities deliberately, former Defense Minister Seyran Ohanyan, the leader of the opposition Armenia parliamentary faction, told reporters on Wednesday.

“There may be a hidden aspect in it. They assume that after the demarcation and delimitation these territories will fall under Azerbaijan’s control,” Ohanyan said, answering a journalist's question about the use of Azerbaijani toponyms by Nikol Pashinyan and the National Security Service when referring to the settlements near the Goris-Kapan road.

He says he cannot understand on what legal basis and in what conditions the border demarcation process would take place.

Ohanyan noted that the Armenian government officials constantly use Azerbaijani names of settlements, while the leadership of Azerbaijan calls the settlements of Armenia by Azerbaijani toponyms.

Ohanyan states it is yet another manifestation of the pressure on the Armenian leaders by Azerbaijan.

“After the defeat in the war, the pressure and provocations will continue for a long while,” said the ex-defense minister.

He noted that the parliamentary opposition has organized hearings on the matter to also find out whether or not the Azerbaijani toponyms are being used by the Armenian authorities on purpose. However, he said, the opposition believes that it is being done deliberately.

He states that the handover of the territories to Azerbaijan envisaged by the November 9 statement is understandable, but the surrender of the areas of strategic importance during the actual demarcation and delimitation process after the peace deal is “completely incomprehensible”.

Ohanyan wondered why the map of the Soviet Union or various other maps are used in the demarcation, questioning their legal basis. He stressed that the parties should have stopped where they were at the end of the war.

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