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 PostPosted: Tue Aug 31, 2004 11:35 am    Post subject: Unrecognized Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan Reply with quote Back to top


Baku Celebrates 13-th Anniversary of Independence Declaration

The Armenian government is sparing no efforts declaring that Nagorno Karabakh has never been part of independent Azerbaijan. In his June 24 speech at the European Council Robert Kocharian stated: "As a result of collapse of the Soviet Union 2 separately independent states were formed in the territory of Soviet Azerbaijan: Nagorno Karabakh and Azerbaijan. The existence of the two states is equally justified. Thus, the territorial wholeness of Azerbaijan has nothing to do with Nagorno Karabakh".

Any historical fact may be viewed from two angles the least. For instance, we, Armenians, are sure that Nakhidjevan is a purely Armenian territory whereas the Azeris assure that not only Nakhidjevan but also Zangezur, Karabakh and Yerevan are Azeri territories. But that Karabakh has never been a part of independent Azerbaijan is a fact, according to the Azerisí very history.

On August 30 the Azeris celebrated the 13-th anniversary of Declaration of Independence of the Republic of Azerbaijan. The communist authorities of Baku adopted the document in 1991, August 30. This document is equally important for Karabakh too. In accordance with the Declaration, Azerbaijan declared its independence in the territory of the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan (DRA) of 1918-1920. Nagorno Karabakh was not in the territory of Azerbaijan by that time. Therefore, if the contemporary Azerbaijan is the successor of the DRA, according to the Declaration, then Baku cannot have claims for Karabakh. Only after July 5 of 1921 Karabakh was forced into Soviet Azerbaijan.

In 1918-1920 not only Nagorno Karabakh but also Plain Karabakh and Nakhidjevan were included in the DRA. Nakhidjevan became a protectorate of Azerbaijan only in 1921 according to Kars Treaty. And the Plain Karabakh was partially added to Azerbaijan during time. An interesting fact: The League of Nations, predecessor of the UNO, didnít recognize the DRA reasoning it by Azerbaijanís territorial conflicts, i.e. Karabakh and Nakhidjevan, with its neighbors.

Jamil Hasanov, historian at the Baku State University, writes that the Azeri delegation left for the Paris peace conference in 1919 hoping that the League of Nations would recognize the DRA independence and would enroll Azerbaijan in the League. The Baku delegation hoped to get the US president Wilsonís support and to establish diplomatic relations between the two states, according to Dr. Hasanov. Despite the supposed support of president Wilson, the issues of DRAís independence and membership in the league remained unsolved, writes Dr. Hasanov.

The DRA failed to gain membership in the League of Nations in contrast to neighboring Armenia and Georgia. Thus, Azerbaijan was not internationally recognized because it tried to come into the League with Karabakh and Nakhidjevan, non-Azeri territories.

There are other examples too testifying to the fact that Karabakh was not a part of the DRA. For instance, on April 20 of 1920, the other day of Azerbaijanís sovietization, the Foreign Affairs commissar Husejnov send a note to the government of yet independent Armenian Republic (Armenia became Soviet only on December 2). It read: "The proletarian government of the Soviet Republic of Azerbaijan demands that you clear Karabakh and Zangezur off your troops". This also testifies to the fact that Karabakh was not a part of Azerbaijan during the first Soviet years. Husejnov didnít mention the name of Nakhidjevan simply because it was a part of independent Armenia by that time and was annexed only in the spring of 1921.

On August 10 of 1920 a treaty bet
ween the Dashnak (the ruling party) government and Soviet Russia was signed. The second part of the treaty read: "The Soviet troops of Russia conquer the arguable regions of Karabakh, Zangezur and Nakhidjevan with the exception of the territories destined for the troops of the Armenian Republic".

And at last the note signed by the chairman of the Revolutionary Committee Narimanov and the Peoplesí Commissar of Foreign Affairs Husejnov which says: "Nagorno Karabakh, Zangezur and Nakhidjevan are recognized as constituents of Soviet Armenia".

By Tatoul Hakobian

AZG Armenian Daily #150, 31/08/2004
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