Today, Azerbaijan remembers victims of- Khojaly genocide

Today, Azerbaijan remembers victims of- Khojaly genocide. 26 years have passed since one the most tragic page in Azerbaijan’s independence history - Khojaly genocide.

The Khojaly genocide took place on February 26, 1992, when Armenian armed forces attacked the town of Khojaly and massacred 613 civilians, including some 300 children, women and elderly people. The Human Rights Watch called it the “largest massacre in the conflict”.

Over the night of the 25 to 26 February 1992, following massive artillery bombardment of Khojaly, the assault on the town began from various directions. The attack and capture of the town, carried out by the Armenian forces, with the direct participation of the infantry guards regiment No. 366 of the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, involved the extermination of 613 Azerbaijanis, including 106 women, 83 children and 70 elderly, 487 were wounded and 1275 were taken hostage, while the town was razed to the ground. The fate of over 150 still remains unknown. 56 persons were killed with special cruelty: burnt alive, scalped, beheaded, gouged out eyes, pregnant women bayoneted. Several families were completely assassinated, the people were exterminated with unprecedented cruelty, and those taken captives were subjected to ruthless torture. 

The ongoing armed conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan has resulted in the occupation of almost one-fifth of the territory of Azerbaijan and made approximately one out of every eight persons in the country an internally displaced or refugee. Most serious international offenses, such as war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide were committed in the course of the conflict.

Since 1992, Azerbaijan has worked hard to recover from the atrocities of that brutal invasion, and to make sure the perpetrators of these crimes, the mass murder of innocent people, were condemned. And the world has responded: countries from Mexico to Slovenia and from Bosnia ­Herzegovina to Peru, as well as nineteen U.S. states, including Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Nebraska, New Mexico, Texas, Utah and others ­have all condemned the Khojaly genocide. We hope that the People's Republic of China will also join the countries condemning this genocide.

“Justice for Khojaly” international campaign was launched on 8 May 2008 on the initiative of Ms. Leyla Aliyeva, Vice-President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, in order to raise international awareness of the Khojaly Genocide.

 More detailed information, including photo and video materials about the Khojaly genocide can be obtained from the following web-site: www.justiceforkhojaly.org

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