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President of the ARTSAKH REPUBLIC
Bako S. Sahakyan
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DECLARATION
On Proclamation of the Nagorno Karabagh Republic

The joint session of the councils of people's deputies with the participation of deputies of councils of all levels of the Nagorno Karabagh Autonomous District and Shahumyan Region

Expressing the will of people fixed by an actual referendum and in the decisions of authorities of the Nagorno Karabagh Autonomous District and Shahoumian Region in 1988-1991, as well as its strive for freedom, independence, equality and good neighborly relations;

Ascertaining proclamation by the Azerbaijani Republic the restoration of the 1918-1920 state independence;

Taking into consideration that the policy of apartheid and discrimination pursued in Azerbaijan created an atmosphere of hatred and intolerance in this republic towards the Armenian people, which led to armed conflict, human causalities, mass deportation of the population from peaceful Armenian villages;

Being guided by the acting USSR Constitution and laws providing people of autonomous units and compactly living ethnic groups the right to decide independently the issue of their legal state status in case of secession of a Soviet republic from the USSR;

Considering the strive of the Armenian people for unification to be natural and corresponding to the norms of international law;

Striving for restoration of good neighborly relations between Armenian and Azerbaijani peoples on the basis of mutual respect of each other's rights;

Taking into consideration complexity and contradictoriness of the situation in the state, uncertainty of the Union's future, Union's structures of authority and governance;

Respecting and being guided by the principles of Universal Declaration on Human Rights, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights as well as counting on international community's understanding and support,

PROCLAIMS:

THE NAGORNO KARABAGH REPUBLIC WITHIN THE BORDERS OF THE PRESENT NAGORNO KARABAGH AUTONOMOUS DISTRICT AND NEIGHBORING SHAHOUMIAN REGION (NKR in an abbreviated form).

The Nagorno Karabagh Republic enjoys the authorities given to Republics by the Constitution and legislation of the USSR and reserves the right to decide independently the issue of its legal state status on the basis of political consultations and negotiations with the leadership of the Union and its republics.

The USSR Constitution and legislation, as well as other laws currently in force, which do not contradict the goals and principles of this Declaration and specifics of the republic are in force on the territory of the Nagorno Karabagh Republic until the NKR Constitution and laws are adopted.

Joint Session of the Nagorno Karabagh Autonomous District
and Shahumian Regional councils of people's deputies
with the participation of deputies of councils of all levels

Stepanakert,
September 2, 1991.

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