Baku to host int'l conference on Khojaly massacre

21 February 2013 12:49 (UTC+04:00)

Azerbaijani ruling party YAP and Garadagh District Executive Authorities will co-organize an international conference titled "Justice for Khojaly campaign: International Cooperation and Solidarity within Political and Legal Assessment" in Baku on February 23-24.

On the sidelines of the conference, its participants will visit national leader Heydar Aliyev`s tomb, a monument to Khojaly genocide victims and the cemetery of Guba massacre victims.

The Khojaly massacre is one of the most heinous and bloodiest events of the 20th century. Late into the night of February 25, 1992, the town of Khojaly came under intensive fire from the town of Khankendi and Askeran already occupied by Armenian armed forces. At night 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.

Thousands of fleeing civilians were ambushed by Armenian forces. Punitive teams of the so-called NK defense army reached the unprotected civilians to slaughter them, mutilating and scalping some bodies. In just a few hours, 613 civilians were killed, including 106 women, 70 elderly and 83 children. A total of 1,000 civilians were disabled. 56 people were killed with outrageous brutality, eight families were totally exterminated, and 25 children lost both parents, while 130 children lost at least one parent, in what became the most brutal punishment of civilians during the three years of the conflict's military phase. Moreover, 1,275 innocent people were taken hostage, while the fate of 150 remains unknown.