According to international law and conventions, it is illegal for business entities to do any kind of business investment in the occupied territories, Chairman of Azerbaijani-American Youth Association Vugar Ahmadov told Trend.
“None of the countries can provide a guarantee for the security and continued prosperity of these companies. Additionally, it will undermine the credibility of any company that operates in occupied territories. Even though Armenia has occupied Azerbaijani territory of Nagorno Karabakh since 1993 year and continues to so to this day, some foreign companies continue investing in the occupied Nagorno Karabakh region,” he said.
“One of these foreign companies is the Franck Muller Group. This company is world-famous for its grand complications and luxury watches as well as being in business in partnership with Pierre Coffey. Franck Muller watches are worn by celebrities like Demi Moore and Elton John. CEO of this company is Vartan Sirmakes who is of Armenian descent, who is the one most active investor in Armenia as well as in the occupied Nagorno Karabakh region, controlled by the Armenian separatist regime,” Ahmadov said.
“Sirmakes promised to implement the various development programs for both Armenia and “Nagorno Karabakh” which will lead to the creation of new jobs and ensuring economic activity. In October 2014, Gold Star CJSC started the exploitation of the gold mine (referred to by Armenia as “Tundurget”) near Vejnali village in the occupied Zangilan district of Azerbaijan,” Ahmadov noted.
“There is another fact about the investment projects of this company in occupied Azerbaijani territories which are against all international norms and conventions. In November 2015, the Narimanov district court of Baku has ruled to demand the custody of Vartan Sirmakes, who is a citizen of Switzerland. Azerbaijan applied to Interpol for Sirmakes’ arrest,” Ahmadov said.
“Azerbaijani government pleaded several times with the international community, foreign companies, and citizens of foreign countries from refraining of making visits to Nagorno Karabakh, the occupied Azerbaijani territories,” he said, adding that those foreign citizens who have violated these rules have faced with appropriate legal actions within the international frameworks.
“We as the civil society of Azerbaijan would like once more to appeal to international foreign companies and citizens to be careful and refrain from any activities in occupied Nagorno Karabakh region because it will undermine the credibility of these companies and may lead to legal actions against them. As long as the Armenian-Azerbaijan Nagorno Karabakh conflict has not been resolved, any business activities, foreign investments in this region may be considered under the threat. As the civil society we protest any kind of similar activity in the occupied Azerbaijani territories,” he said.