Interview with Hovhannes Guevorkian, Representative of the Republic of Artsakh in France

KORNIDZOR, ARMENIA – SEPTEMBER 26: A family walks through parked cars while waiting to visit the Armenian Red Cross tents on September 26, 2023 in Kornidzor, Armenia. (Photo by Astrig Agopian/Getty Images)

What is the state of negotiations and the ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh, and what do you expect from them? What are the risks for the population?

There is no ceasefire and no negotiations. Azerbaijan annexed Artsakh by force. Left to fend for themselves against the military might of the Azerbaijani dictatorship, the Artsakh Self-Defense Forces have surrendered and laid down their arms. However, Azerbaijan does not stop being victorious. There’s no need to talk about the risks. The exodus of Artsakh’s population has begun. A forced exodus as the population flees the atrocities committed by Azerbaijani soldiers. Ethnic cleansing is taking place.


What is the humanitarian situation in Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh, and what do you think needs to be done to help the population?

We can no longer speak of a humanitarian situation in Nagorno-Karabakh, as there will soon be no Armenian population there. Under these conditions, we need to focus on the needs of this population, which is finding refuge in the Republic of Armenia. We need to find them shelter, provide for their basic needs and, above all, think about their integration, so that as refugees they don’t become a target for hatred.

In this context of crisis and extreme danger, what do you expect from the international community (UN, EU, Russia, France, USA, etc.)?

Artsakh, as a collective entity, has been conquered by Azerbaijan. No state, no international structure has undertaken to prevent the use of force and the resulting ethnic cleansing of Armenians. Not because the preventive mechanisms were ineffective, but because there was a lack of political will against the declared plan to obliterate Nagorno-Karabakh. In this respect, the players are all equal. This is a dangerous trend, because it can generate a feeling in the world that problems can be solved by force, regardless of the means employed, such as the international crime of genocide.

After Azerbaijan’s military aggression in Nagorno-Karabakh, do you think Armenia is safe now?

No, the disarmament of Nagorno-Karabakh is breaking Armenia. It’s hard to believe the assertions, however assertively made, that this amputation of Armenia serves to strengthen it. All the more so as the forces working towards this amputation are motivated precisely by the weakening of Armenia, not its strengthening.


Hovhannès Guévorkian

Since 2003, the Republic of Artsakh in France has been represented by Mr Hovhannès Guévorkian. Mr. Guévorkian was born on February 22, 1974. He is married with three children.

In 1996, he graduated from the Faculty of International Relations at Yerevan State University in Armenia. In 2001, he obtained a DEA in Political Science and International Relations from the Université Paris 2 Panthéon Assas.

Between 1996 and 1998, Mr. Guévorkian worked for various international organizations in Armenia and Artsakh. In 1998, he was appointed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Artsakh. Prior to his appointment as Representative of the Republic in France, he served as deputy to this post.



Leave a Reply