Heads of religious confessions in Azerbaijan have addressed a letter to the world’s religious leaders, parliaments and international organizations.
The letter was signed by Chairman of the Caucasian Muslims Office Sheikh-ul Islam Allahshukur Pashazadeh, Archbishop of Baku and Azerbaijan Alexander; Head of the Community of Mountain Jews in Azerbaijan Melih Yevdayev, and Head of the Albanian-Udi Christian Community in Azerbaijan Robert Mobili, APA reports.
In their letter, the religious leaders urge the international community to give legal assessment to the acts of genocide carried out against the Azerbaijani people by Armenia.
The letter reads that in 1905 and 1918 Armenian extremists carried out an appalling massacre of tens of thousands of Azerbaijanis in Baku, Nakhchivan, Garabagh, Shamakhi, Lankaran, Guba and other areas, destroying residential areas, historical and cultural monuments, mosques, churches and synagogues.
“In the 1920s, Zangazur, which was historical Azerbaijani land, was annexed to Armenia with no basis. In addition, an Armenian autonomy was established in Nagorno-Karabakh. Between 1948 and 1953, hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis were driven out of their homes. That’s how the present-day mono-ethnic Armenian Republic came into existence in the ancestral land of Azerbaijanis. In the second half of the 1980s, Armenian nationalists began a new series of aggression and ethnic cleansing against Azerbaijanis as a result of Armenian lobbyists pressuring the USSR leadership.”
The religious leaders reminded that Armenian chauvinists, taking advantage of the removal of prominent Azerbaijani statesman Heydar Aliyev from the USSR leadership, achieved the brutal expulsion of nearly 300,000 Azerbaijanis from Armenia.
“Twenty percent of Azerbaijani territory – Nagorno-Karabakh and seven surrounding districts – were occupied in the wake of large-scale military operations; more than a million Azerbaijanis were expelled from their native lands. Armenians committed acts of vandalism in the occupied Azerbaijani territories, destroying historical, religious, cultural monuments, sanctuaries and cemeteries,” the letter says.
According to the religious leaders, the genocide perpetrated by Armenian extremists in the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly in 1992 was the culmination of the atrocities they committed.
It is emphasized that in 1998 Azerbaijani President Heydar Aliyev signed an order declaring March 31 as the ‘Day of Genocide of Azerbaijanis.
“Those who do not give a worthy response to the acts of genocide committed against Azerbaijanis by Armenian extremists, who call themselves genocide victims, should know that sooner of later justice will prevail,” the letter says.