Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. 27
U.S. Congressmen Steve Cohen and Virginia Foxx made statements in connection with the 22nd anniversary of the Khojaly tragedy in Congress on February 25, the Azerbaijani embassy in the U.S. reported on Feb. 27.
In his statement, co-chairman of the working group on Azerbaijan in the Congress, Steve Cohen reported on the tragedy in Khojaly in the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan. He stressed that the region is currently under occupation. While describing Azerbaijan as a strong U.S. ally in an important region of the world, the congressman stressed the importance of the U.S.'s active participation in resolving the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict.
In her statement, member of the working group on Azerbaijan Virginia Foxx called the Khojaly tragedy the most tragic event during the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict. She stressed the importance of revering the Khojaly tragedy victims' memory by the American people.
U.S. Congressmen Gene Green and Tim Ryan also made statements in the Congress in connection with the 22nd anniversary of the Khojaly tragedy.
Congressman Green urged the world leaders to contribute to the achievement of a peace agreement that will put an end to the occupation of Azerbaijani lands.
Congressman Ryan stressed that the just and comprehensive settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict is crucial in terms of establishing a lasting peace in the region.
On February 25-26, 1992 Armenian occupation forces together with the 366th infantry regiment of Soviet troops stationed in Khankendi committed an act of genocide against the population of the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly.
Some 613 people were killed, including 63 children, 106 women and 70 old people. A total of 1,000 civilians were disabled during the genocide.
Eight families were totally exterminated, 130 children lost one parent and 25 children lost both.
Some 1,275 innocent residents were taken hostages, while the fate of 150 people remains unknown.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan since 1992, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Russia, France and the U.S. are currently holding peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.
Translated by NH
Edited by CN