Yesterday (23 September), Azerbaijan filed a lawsuit against Armenia with the International Court of Justice, the principal judicial organ of the UN.
The case claims that Armenia is at fault of breaching the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD), a UN treaty. The lawsuit states that “through both direct and indirect means, Armenia continues its policy of ethnic cleansing", and that it "incites hatred and ethnic violence against Azerbaijanis by engaging in hate speech and disseminating racist propaganda, including at the highest levels of its government”. The lawsuit also accuses Armenia of “nullifying and impairing the human rights and fundamental freedoms of Azerbaijanis in violation of Articles 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 of CERD". These pertain to a signatory’s obligation to (2) condemn and not sponsor, defend or support racial discrimination; (3) to condemn racial discrimination and apartheid; (4) to condemn all organisations and groups “based on ideas or theories of superiority of one race or group of persons of one colour or ethnic origin”; (5) to prohibit and eliminate racial discrimination, including equality before the law; (6) to ensure everyone within its jurisdiction protection or remedies against discrimination; and (7) to adopt measures, “particularly in the fields of teaching, education, culture and information”, with a view to combat prejudices which lead to racial discrimination.
Last week, Armenia filled a similar lawsuit, also accusing Azerbaijan of infringements to the (CERD). It is expected that both cases will take years to reach a conclusion.