On February 25, 2019, a commemoration ceremony dedicated to the 27th anniversary of the Khojaly genocide was held in Beijing. The ceremony was attended by the members of Azerbaijani diaspora living in Beijing and the representatives of various government structures and businessmen of Azerbaijan being in Beijing at the 7th session of the Azerbaijani-Chinese bilateral Commission on trade and economic cooperation as well as the representatives of the local community.
At outset, Ambassador of the Republic Azerbaijan to People’s Republic of China H.E.Mr. Akram Zeynalli invited the audience to observe a minute of silence to commemorate the innocent victims of Khojaly genocide.
Then, Ambassador spoke about the situation of that period when the newly established Republic was faced with heavy difficulties arising from the military aggression of the neighboring Armenia. As a result, 20 percent of its internationally recognized territories were occupied and more than one million of refugees and internally displaced people were created.
Ambassador gave broad information about the history of the Khojaly genocide, which he characterized as the most painful tragedy in the recent history of the Azerbaijani people. As a result, 613 persons were killed, including 106 women, 63 children and 70 elderly people. 1275 inhabitants were taken hostage, while the fate of 150 persons remains unknown to this day. In the course of the tragedy 487 inhabitants of Khojaly were severely maimed, including 76 children not yet of age. 6 families were completely wiped out, 26 children lost both parents, and 130 children one of their parents. Of those who perished, 56 persons were killed with especial cruelty: by burning alive, scalping, beheading, gouging out of eyes, and bayoneting of pregnant women in the abdomen.
Ambassador told the audience that in 2009, by the initiative of the vice-president of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation Leyla Aliyeva, the campaign of “Justice for Khojaly” was launched to inform the international community. As a result of this campaign, the declarations and documents by the parliaments of different countries like Bosnia and Herzegovina, Colombia, Czech Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, Jordan, Mexico, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Paraguay, Romania, Slovenia, Sudan and Djibouti, as well as 24 states of the USA and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation representing 57 states, were adopted.
Ambassador stressed that only the commemoration of the tragedy and the corresponding legal assessment, including the punishment of the perpetrators, will help to prevent such tragedies in future. He expressed the confidence that the consistent measures being taken at the national level, as well as the existing international legal framework, will serve to bring to justice those responsible for the grave offenses committed against the civilian population of Azerbaijan during the conflict.
At the end of the event, Azerbaijani musicians gave a concert of classical music by Azerbaijani and Western composers.