The Nagorno-Karabakh territory, occupied by Armenia, is used for cultivation, sale and transit of drug. Since this territory is actually uncontrollable, transnational criminal groups take advantage of it, Deputy Prime Minister, Head of the State Commission on Drug Addiction and Prevention of Illegal Drug Trafficking Ali Hasanov said at the international conference on combating drug trafficking in Baku.
He said Azerbaijan’s territory attracts drug traffickers as a transit corridor, and it should be considered when combating drug trafficking.
“From a geographical point of view, Azerbaijan is located between drug producer – Asia and drug user – Europe, so drug dealers are interested in increasing drug trafficking through our country by road, water, air, as well as rail transport,” Hasanov said.
He stressed that as a result of the occupation of 20 percent of Azerbaijani territories by Armenian Armed Forces, this area and 132 kilometers of the Azerbaijani-Iranian border became uncontrolled in fact, thus creating conditions for drug trafficking.
“According to current information, these territories are actively used for cultivation, sale and transit of drug, arms and human trafficking, and became haven for terrorists and members of other types of transnational crime,” Hasanov said.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan since 1992, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and 7 surrounding districts.
Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group – Russia, France, and the U.S. – are currently holding the peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council’s four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.