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PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Februaty 25, 2011

No.2

WASHINGTON REMEMBERS VICTIMS OF THE KHOJALY GENOCIDE

Armenian Troops Slaughtered Innocent People 19 Years Ago

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A special event commemorating the 19th anniversary of the Khojaly Genocide was held at the George Washington University on February 25th in Washington, D.C.

Khojaly was a small town in the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan. On February 25-26, 1992 the armed forces of Armenia invaded Khojaly brutally killing hundreds of innocent civilians, including children, women and the elderly. 613 civilians, of them 106 women, 83 children and 79 elderly, were savagely slaughtered. Another 1,000 people were wounded, and 1,275 were taken hostage.

The major international media outlets such as The New York Times, Newsweek, The Sunday Times, The Independent, The Times and others reported about the massacre with horror. Human Rights Watch described these atrocities “as the largest massacre to date in the conflict”.

In the most shocking admission of culpability, Armenia’s then-defense minister Serzh Sargsyan was quoted in the book Black Garden: Armenia and Azerbaijan Through Peace and War (by Thomas de Waal, NYU Press, 2003, page 85), as saying, “Before Khojaly, Azerbaijanis thought that they were joking with us, they thought that the Armenians were people who could not raise their hand against the civilian population. We were able to break that stereotype. And that’s what happened.”

Addressing the event Mr. Yashar Aliyev, Ambassador of Azerbaijan to the U.S., emphasized the increased attention by the international community to this massacre. In this connection he highlighted the world-wide campaign “Justice for Khojaly”. Other speakers at the event were Professor of the Montana State University Thomas Goltz, Counsellor, Deputy Permanent Representative of Azerbaijan to the UN Tofig Musayev, Executive Director of the Azerbaijan Society of America Dr. Javid Huseynov, and President-Elect of the Assembly of Turkish-American Associations Ergun Kirlikovali, who shared their memories and assessments of the massacre.