Concerning the 24th anniversary of Khojaly Genocide

24 years pass since Armenian military forces committed genocide act against peaceful inhabitants of the city ofKhojalyofAzerbaijanin 1992.  This genocide was committed as a part of aggression, long-lasting ethnic cleansing and genocide policy of Armenian chauvinists and their supporters againstAzerbaijan, violating the norms and principles of international law as well as the human rights and freedoms.

The massacre committed in Khojaly city at the night from 25th to 26th  February of 1992, by the Armenian armed forces together with the 366th moto-artillery regiment of the former Soviet army was one of the unprecedented events in the history of humanity due to its cruelty.

During Khojaly genocide, 613 people, including 106 women, 63 children and 70 old people were killed; over 1000 civilians became disabled as a result of severe injuries; 1275 people were taken hostages, the fate of 150 out of them still remains unknown. 8 families were totally exterminated; 25 children lost both, whereas 130 children lost one parent; captives and hostages were subjected to merciless torture. All these acts were committed by Armenian military with special mercilessness and inconceivable barbarism and human rights of those people, especially the fundamental right to life were grossly violated.

This massacre, which took place in late 20th century, was one of the most cruel crimes not only against the Azerbaijanis, but also humanity as a whole. The Khojaly genocide has become one of the most terrible and tragic pages of world and Azerbaijani history.

During the aggression against the people in Khojaly, all elements of the crime of genocide stated in the International Conventions (The UN General Assembly Resolution 96 (I) dated 11 December 1946 & United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide adopted by the Resolution 260 (III) of the UN General Assembly of 9 December 1948.  ) were applied.

Khojaly genocide was a criminal act which planned by Armenian military in advance and aimed at mass annihilation of Azerbaijani people on the ground of their nationality. However, unfortunately, this act of genocide against the Azerbaijani civilians in Khojaly have not been yet properly assessed, the organizers and the committers of this crime were not prosecuted and punished.

Armenia continued its aggression against Azerbaijan even after the Khojaly massacre and invaded twenty percent of Azerbaijani territories (Nagorno-Karabakh and adjacent seven regions)  violating the principles of international law and ignoring international community’s demands to stop aggression. As a consequence, thousands of Azerbaijanis were killed, hundreds of cities, towns and villages were destroyed completely and over one million of the Azerbaijani people became refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs), whose main rights and freedoms were severely violated

Occupied Nagorno-Karabakh and adjacent seven regions are a historical and integral part ofAzerbaijan. This is re-affirmed once again by the international law, as well as by the UN Security Council Resolutions 822, 853, 874, 884 from 1993, UNGA Resolution on “Situation on the occupied territories of Azerbaijan” dated on March 14, 2008, Resolution 1416 from 2005, Recommendation 1669 from 2009 of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe confirming the occupation of Azerbaijani territories by the Armenian military forces and demanding immediate, unconditional and total withdrawal of all occupant forces out of the territories of Azerbaijan. However, those demands have not been fulfilled by the Armenian side and the historical territories ofAzerbaijanstill remain under the occupation.

within last years, a number of actions have been fulfilled to draw the attention of the international community to the realities about Nagorno-Karabakh conflict , including Khojaly tragedy. In this regard,  International campaign “Justice for Khojaly” initiated by Leyla Aliyeva, the Vice-President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, is one of the purposeful measures taken for internationally recognition of the Khojaly tragedy as an act of genocide committed against the people of Azerbaijan. As a result, the Parliaments of a number of countries already recognized the crime in Khojaly as a genocide act

The Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) was the first international organization that recognizedArmeniaas an aggressor and the Khojaly tragedy as genocide. Resolution No. 8/42-C adopted by the 42nd session of the Council of  Foreign Ministers of OIC member states (Kuwait, 27-28 may, 2015) calls upon Member States and OIC institutions to support and actively participate in the events of the Campaign “Justice for Khojaly” and exert due efforts for recognition on national and international levels of this genocidal act as crime against humanity as well as for bringing to justice the perpetrators.

Despite all, this crime by Armenian aggressors against the Azerbaijani people hasn't received due condemnation by the world community to date. Azerbaijani people remember and will never forget memory of all Khojaly martyrs and will continue its struggle to restore its territorial integrity and to bring the  perpetrators of massacres against Azerbaijanis to the justice.

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