By Rashid Shirinov
The genocide in Azerbaijan's occupied town Khojaly remains one of the most terrible massacres against innocent people in the history of mankind. This massacre can be considered the most horrible example of Armenian vandalism against Azerbaijani people.
Russian historian and political analyst Oleg Kuznetsov has prepared a petition addressed to the deputies of the State Duma of the Russian Federation on recognition of the Khojaly tragedy as genocide.
To date, almost 11,000 people have signed the document, but 15,000 signatures are needed for the State Duma to express its reaction.
The document reads that the order for committing the Khojaly Genocide was given by incumbent President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan, who at that time was the “Chairman of The Self-Defense Forces Committee” and the chief of staff of all illegal armed groups of Armenian separatists in Nagorno-Karabakh.
When Thomas de Waal, a senior associate at Washington DC-based Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, interviewed Sargsyan back in 2000, the then-Armenian Defense Minister Sargsyan confessed that the Armenian army had indeed carried out some ethnic cleansing in the Nagorno-Karabakh region in order to achieve its goals.
The petition reads that the parliaments of Mexico, Turkey, Colombia, Guatemala, Peru, Jordan, Honduras and Djibouti recognized the crimes committed by Armenians in Khojaly as a genocide of the Azerbaijani people.
Moreover, the parliaments of Pakistan, Sudan, Israel, the Czech Republic, and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation recognized the events in Khojaly as a crime against humanity.
The petition calls upon the deputies of the State Duma to follow the example of their foreign colleagues and to recognize the crimes of Armenian terrorists in the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly on February 25-26, 1992, as a crime of genocide (crime against humanity).
The petition is accessible at http://bit.ly/2n0cOY3
Late into the night of February 25, 1992, Khojaly came under intensive fire from the towns of Khankendi and Askeran already occupied by Armenian armed forces. The Armenian forces, supported by the ex-Soviet 366th regiment, completed the surrounding of the town already isolated due to ethnic cleansing of the Azerbaijani population of the neighboring regions. The joint forces occupied the town, which was ruined by heavy artillery shelling.
Of 3,000 people who were in the town of Khojaly at the moment of the Armenian attack 613 were killed, including 106 women, 63 children and 70 elders. 487 people were severely wounded, including 76 children. 1,275 people were captured and subjected to unprecedented torture, the fate of 197 people still remains unknown. Eight families were totally annihilated, 130 children lost one and 25 lost both parents.
Rashid Shirinov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @RashidShirinov
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