Turkish Foreign Ministry issues statement on anniversary of Khojaly genocide
BAKU, Azerbaijan, Feb. 26
Turkey's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has issued a statement on the 28th anniversary of the Khojaly genocide, Trend reports with reference to the ministry's website.
"As a result of the attack of the armed forces of the Armenian Army on the Azerbaijani city of Khojaly in Nagorno Karabakh on the night of Feb. 25-26, 1992, 613 people were killed with particular cruelty, including 106 women, 63 children and 70 elderly people, 487 civilians were seriously injured," the Turkish ministry said in the statement.
"Due to the occupation of Azerbaijani territories with inhumane acts against the civilian population, more than one million Azerbaijanis were forced to leave their homes, becoming internally displaced. Currently, 20 percent of Azerbaijani territories are under occupation. Turkish Foreign Ministry sharply condemns the long-term occupation of Azerbaijani lands and the genocide committed in Khojaly," the ministry added.
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.
During the Karabakh war, on Feb. 25-26, 1992, the Armenian armed 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. Eight families were totally exterminated, 130 children lost one parent and 25 children lost both. Some 1,275 innocent residents were taken hostage, while the fate of 150 people still remains unknown.
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 Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.