Politics 17:33 12/04/2016 NKR

ANCA: There are credible reports about atrocities committed by Azerbaijani forces against NKR civilians

The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) is calling upon the Obama Administration investigate violations of the “Leahy Law” regarding U.S. military assistance to units of the Azerbaijani armed forces that are credibly reported to have committed “gross violations of internationally recognized human rights,” the Armenian-American newspaper Asbarez reports.

It is known that the U.S. provides the official Baku with military aid, and in their appeal, the ANCA representatives raised alarms about Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev’s major escalation in aggression in terms of the introduction of advanced weapons, the level of fatalities, and the “gross violations of internationally recognized human rights” his forces are credibly alleged to have committed against both civilians and soldiers.
 
The ANCA specifically calls upon the U.S. President and Members of Congress to “immediately zero-out U.S. military aid to Azerbaijan pending the outcome of a Leahy Law investigation” at a legislative level and, “to bring the responsible members of Azerbaijan’s security forces to justice.”
 
The ANCA letter also asked U.S. officials to recall that “the Azerbaijani government has yet to bring to justice Ramil Safarov, who, in 2004, axe-murdered Armenian officer Gurgen Margaryan while he was asleep at a NATO Partnership for Peace peacekeeping training program in Hungary. Rather than supporting efforts to punish this admitted killer, President Aliyev secured Safarov’s transfer from a Hungarian prison and then brought him home to Baku, where he was pardoned, given a parade, promoted in rank, and given back pay.”
 
“Credible reports of atrocities committed by Aliyev’s forces against civilians and Karabakh defense forces during the April 2 – 7 Azerbaijani attack on Nagorno Karabakh republic are now emerging – including the execution and mutilation of an elderly couple in the village of Talish and the beheading of Armenian soldiers,” ANCA's appeal reads. 
 
Meanwhile, Asbarez editor Ara Khachatourian also writes about the atrocities committed by the Azerbaijani militaries in the Nagorno Karabakh Republic. 
 
“Imagine, for a moment, that you are a parent who last week buried your son-a soldier killed by Azerbaijani forces during a massive attack on the Nagrono-Karabakh Republic. Imagine you are the same parent who is forced to re-inter your son because you’ve just received his decapitated head after the International Committee of the Red Cross reclaimed it from Azerbaijan in an exchange of dead soldiers,” Khachatourian writes. 
 
He noted that that was the case for the Sloyan family. Their son, Kyaram, who would have turned 20 on April 27, was decapitated by Azerbaijani soldiers. His headless body was buried on April 4. The disturbing images of his head made the rounds on social media last week posted by Azerbaijanis who celebrated Sloyan’s brutal death as a victory.
 
Then there was the elderly couple in the village Talish. They were brutally murdered in their home by Azerbaijani armed units and their ears were cut off as trophies. The Armenian Defense Ministry is accusing Azerbaijan of wide-spread war crimes, after seeing the ICRC-mediated exchange of bodies.
 “Yet the international community has, once again, opted to give Azerbaijan another pass for its well-documented savagery, which has been on display since the beginning of the Karabakh conflict. From Sumgait, to Kirovabad, to Baku and Maragha and Shahumian Azerbaijan has shown the world what kind of brutality its soldiers are capable of. The silence or lack of reaction has emboldened Azerbaijan to use such violence as a cornerstone of its military strategy,” the author highlights. 
 
He notes that this was how the world quietly watched as Ramil Safarov used an ax to murder the Armenian soldier Gurgen Markarian.
 
According to Asbarez,  the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) Sebouh Gomideh, in cooperation with several international associations, organized a demonstration outside the Azerbaijani Embassy in the U.S. The protesters were chanting pro-peace messages. However, they were met by a small counter-protest drawn from the families of Azerbaijani Embassy staff – celebrating the Aliyev government’s brutal onslaught that had resulted in numerous deaths in the Karabakh conflict zone. 
“As Americans, we are appalled at Azerbaijan’s reckless disregard for human life — whether Armenian or Azeri,” ARF Sebouh Chapter Chairman Aram Sarafian said. 
 
It is also reported that in light of the renewed Azerbaijani aggression against the people of Artsakh (NKR), the Armenian Youth Federation has announced the re-launching of the “With Our Soldiers” campaign. 
 
The new phase of the initiative will be focused on aiding the families of those who are currently defending the liberated territories and helping the inhabitants of the border regions of Artsakh and Armenia impacted by attacks from Azerbaijan. “The people in Armenia and Artsakh should know that they are not alone in their struggle and that the entire Armenian nation stands behind them,” said Karnig Barseghian, the member of the AYF Central Executive.


Source Panorama.am
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