The first Human Rights Defender of Armenia, Larisa Alaverdyan, provided her opinion on why the current administration is hiding the true number of Armenian prisoners of war in Azerbaijan.
“When the heinous trilateral agreement was signed on November 9th, severe battles continued and many battalions were in different places that were handed over to Azerbaijan in accordance with that agreement and future verbal agreements. Soldiers and civilians were in those locations. To speak about the humanitarian side of this decision is a crime. In other words, those territories were handed over in writing and verbally along with the people. That is the explanation for how they can say that they don’t know the true number of prisoners of war or missing in action. But state bodies must know that, and I believe that they not only know the true number, but they also have full lists of those people’s names. Weren’t those people sent according to lists? The number of soldiers missing in action and prisoners of war is not publicized because it will raise questions. Why did you hand over those territories without demanding a few days or two weeks so that soldiers and civilians could leave? When did the 62 prisoners from Hadrut reach Azerbaijan? One month after the agreement was signed on December 12th. The questions are very heavy here, and the answers, perhaps, can only be given in a courtroom. One of the main reasons for not publishing the true number of captives is a lack of a value system,” Larisa Alaverdyan said.