An Armenian soldier who had crossed the Line of Contact on 22 March 2015 was returned today in an operation carried out under the auspices of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). The hand-over of the prisoner of war took place at the Line of Contact near the village of Bash Garvand in the Aghdam district of Azerbaijan. According to the Azerbaijani media the person repatriated was a contract soldier of the Armenian Armed Forces, Andranik Araratovich Grigoryan,
A statement issued by the Red Cross in Geneva said that "during his captivity, the ICRC regularly visited him to assess the conditions in which he was held, the treatment he received and to facilitate contact with his family".
The statement added: "Acting as a neutral intermediary and in accordance with its mandate, the ICRC facilitated the return following the decision of the Azerbaijan authorities and with the full cooperation of all sides. The prisoner of war had previously confirmed to ICRC staff that he was returning of his own free will."
On the basis of its mandate under the Geneva Conventions, the ICRC has been working in the region since 1992 in connection with the Nagorny Karabakh conflict.
source: commonspace.eu with ICRC (Geneva) and other media outlets
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