Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. 25
By Orkhan Quluzade – Trend:
Turkey’s Foreign Ministry has released a statement in connection with the 25th anniversary of the Khojaly genocide.
“As a result of Armenia’s attack on the town of Khojaly in Nagorno-Karabakh on Feb. 26, 1992, 613 Azerbaijani nationals were killed, among whom there were 106 women, 63 children and 70 old people,” says the statement.
The ministry said 1,275 people were taken hostage, while the fate of 150 people still remains unknown.
“A fifth part of the Azerbaijani territory is still under occupation, over one million of our Azerbaijani brothers and sisters have become refugees and internally displaced persons.”
“Turkey deeply feels the pain of atrocities faced by Azerbaijani brothers 25 years ago, and shares this pain.”
“Perpetrators of this tragedy will be judged by history. We strongly condemn the massacre committed by Armenian armed forces and the occupation of Azerbaijani territories that has been continuing for many years,” says the statement. “We pray for the souls of those killed in this tragedy.”
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
On February 25-26, 1992, the Armenian armed forces, together with the 366th infantry regiment of the former Soviet troops, stationed in Khankendi, committed an act of genocide against the population of the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly.
The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.
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