By Rashid Shirinov
Armenians are a newcomer population not only in the South Caucasus, but on the whole Asian continent, said Academician Yagub Mahmudov, director of the Institute of History of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences (ANAS).
He made the remarks while addressing an international symposium in Ankara on February 28 dedicated to the 26th anniversary of the Khojaly tragedy.
“The fact that Armenians are newcomers has been testified by the sources and “Father of history” Herodotus,” the academician said.
He continued that as a result of research conducted by the Institute of History, it was proved that an Armenian state never existed in the South Caucasus before 1918.
“Under the pressure of big countries and some political circles of the Ottoman Empire, on May 29, 1918 the government of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic ceded the ancient Azerbaijani city of Irevan, along with the adjacent territory of 9,000 square kilometers, to the Armenians,” Mahmudov mentioned.
The academician further said that Russia and European countries will never create “Great Armenian state” for Armenians, since this is unprofitable for them.
Speaking about the Khojaly genocide, Mahmudov noted that in an interview with the UK journalist Thomas de Waal, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan admitted that he was one of the organizers of the genocide.
“Sargsyan said that before Khojaly, the Azerbaijanis thought that Armenians could not raise their hand against the civilian population, but claimed that Armenians were able to destroy that stereotype,” said Mahmudov, citing Sargsyan’s comments to de Waal.
Khojaly, the second largest town in the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan, came under intense fire by Armenia from the towns of Khankendi and Askeran already occupied by the Armenian armed forces on the night of February 25-26, 1992.
As many as 613 civilians, mostly women and children, were killed in the massacre, and a total of 1,000 people were disabled. Eight families were exterminated, 25 children lost both parents, and 130 children lost one parent. Moreover, 1,275 innocent people were taken hostage, and the fate of 150 of them remains unknown.
Rashid Shirinov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @RashidShirinov
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