HRC 51st Session
General debate under Agenda item 9: Racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related forms of intolerance: follow up to and implementation of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action
Delivered by Mrs. Zoya STEPANYAN, First Secretary
3 October 2022
Armenia took note of the reports presented under this agenda item.
Racism, ethnic profiling and glorification of the atrocity crimes committed in the past seriously undermine efforts aimed at promotion of international peace and security. In autocratic systems, racist hate speech and dehumanization of national, ethnic, racial or religious groups are often times elevated to the level of state ideology with an objective to conveniently replace any domestic discourse by deafening propaganda about the designated enemy. Azerbaijan can serve as an example for this matter, since every inch of public domain is injected with anti-Armenian hatred, racial slur and never ending incitement to violence.
In its recent concluding observations CERD committee expressed concern about the school textbooks in Azerbaijan that “promote prejudice and incite racial hatred, particularly against ethnic Armenians, and that ethnic minorities are marginalized in history education”. The Committee recommended to prevent ethnic hierarchizing in teaching of history. Amid this background, on September 23 hundreds of Azerbaijani schoolchildren in the city of Sumgait were forced to chant “hate to the enemy, hate, hate, hate”, video of which was proudly posted on YouTube.
The detrimental effects of decades-long racist narratives revealed their most warrying manifestations during military hostilities that Azerbaijan is constantly launching.
In the course of the most recent attack against Armenia, Azerbaijani military personnel recorded and circulated videos of their war crimes, including horrendous scenes of mutilation of an Armenian servicewomen. We will refrain both from describing it and citing the cheering chants of the Azerbaijani servicemen in the video.
Against this background, all the few people in Azerbaijan who dared to speak against the aggression unleashed by Azerbaijan against Armenia on September 13 and 14, were publicly intimidated and harassed. Their names and photographs were shared on social media alongside their words, all stamped with the hashtag #xainitaniyaq — which means ‘let’s recognize the traitor’ in translation. The public campaign was run by the youth wing of the ruling political force – New Azerbaijan Party (YAP).
I thank you.