ICMP statement on recent visit to Yerevan and Baku to address the issue of missing persons

The Hague, 7 April 2022: The International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) welcomes the outcomes of discussions on the situation in the South Caucasus yesterday, in Brussels, at a meeting of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev, and the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia, Nikol Pashinyan, and hosted by the President of the European Council, Charles Michel.

The ICMP Director General, Ms. Kathryne Bomberger, visited Armenia last week and Azerbaijan this week for high-level meetings at the invitation of the respective governments to discuss effective cooperation to locate persons missing as a result of armed conflicts in the region. ICMP was assured of the political will of both countries to step-up the efforts of their respective institutions to account for missing persons, thereby giving answers to their families and advancing confidence and peaceful coexistence.

ICMP will in the short-term present both governments with a plan proposing concrete measures for their consideration. ICMP also looks forward to supporting Armenia and Azerbaijan in this important endeavor and congratulates all parties in their continuing and fruitful discussions in Brussels.

ICMP takes this opportunity to assure Armenia and Azerbaijan of its equal commitment to each country’s efforts in that respect and denounces any allegation of partiality in judicial or other processes, in particular as such processes fall outside of ICMP’s mandate, which is to ensure the cooperation of governments to locate missing persons and to assist them in doing so.  Any attribution of such bias to ICMP is erroneous and false.