Petition calls for peace in the post-Soviet countries

Petition calls for peace in the post-Soviet countries
Update: 21 September 2022 13:14
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A group of activists from former Soviet Union and the surrounding countries signed a petition calling on regional governments for not using military force to end regional conflicts

Many academics, journalists, and activists from the former Soviet Union and the surrounding countries signed a petition against the never-ending wars and the growing imperialist rivalries on their territories.

The group calling themselves “PostSovietPeace”, urged all governments on Sunday for genuinely seeking diplomatic solutions for the disputes, but not using force.

“We do not call for peace – we demand peace,” they said.

The signatories of the petition said they are full of rage due to Azerbaijan’s recent attack on Armenia, Russian aggression on Ukraine, and the renewed military clashes between Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. 

Reminding the “devastating experience” of the Second Karabakh war of 2020 that both societies have not yet recovered, 

“Officials need to finally understand that military means cannot solve the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia, but they only deepen the divide between the two countries and cause more violence and human suffering,” they said.

Demanding a permanent return to negotiations, the signatories of the petition called on Azerbaijan to realize that a “peace treaty cannot be achieved through military aggression.”  

Azerbaijani side should also understand that “corridors” cannot be opened via Armenian territory since such prospects would be unacceptable for the local population.

“No one can be forced into peace,” they said. 

 The Armenian side on the other hand should recognize the damage caused by their “rigid negotiation position” for over three decades, according to the signatories. This includes the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis and Armenian side’s refusing to make compromises and solving the conflict in a timely manner, they said.

“Negotiations “mediated” behind closed doors, that do not take into consideration the livelihood and human needs of people affected, are doomed to fail,” they said.

The group who made a connection between the Armenian-Azerbaijanian and the Russian-Ukrainian conflicts, said that the war in Ukraine caused great turbulence and instability in the region and exposed “the simple truth that violence creates more violence.” 

The group said there is no military solution and that priority should be given to non-military diplomatic efforts.

The signatories also said that they are worried about the possibility of re-opening of the Moldovan- Transdniestrian, 

Georgian-Abkhaz, and Georgian-Ossetian conflicts.

The confrontation between NATO and Russia on Ukrainian territory was playing out at the expense of the lives in Ukraine and the residents of Russia near the Ukrainian border, the group said and warned that bigger regional and global wars would break out, if the world stays on this trajectory.  

“We cannot afford this! We do not call for peace – we demand peace! We demand that governments commit to non-use of force, to engage in genuine search for diplomatic solutions that prioritize human security, and to stop interfering with, and better yet, support people-to-people contacts and peacebuilding,” they said.