Beside the few guests of the Azerbaijani event, members of the Armenian youth organization Nazarbek were present, protesting against distortion of history by Azerbaijan, Panorama.am reports.
The representatives of France’s Armenian community informed those present about violations of human rights and free speech in Azerbaijan, referring to the arrested human rights defenders.
The participants shouted, “France is not for sale!” and distributed flyers informing about the real circumstances of the tragedy to the audience. Nazarbek also organized a meeting with Hovhannes Gevorgyan, the NKR representative to France, during which a commemorative ceremony dedicated to the victims of the 1988 Sumgait massacre of Armenians in Azerbaijan took place.
On February 26, 1992, during the war in Karabakh, around 200 to 300 people (according to Human Rights Watch, and 600 according to the version propagated by Azerbaijan) were killed in unknown circumstances near the city of Aghdam. They have been deliberately withheld by the Azerbaijani authorities in the midst of the military actions. Population of Khojaly, one of the firing points of the blockaded Stepanakert (among five others), was forcefully kept in the village for months and not evacuated by the authorities of Azerbaijan deliberately, in order to later use them as human shields.
Residents of Khojaly, coming out through the humanitarian corridor, which the self-defense forces of NKR had left open, freely passed more than 10 km and reached the city of Aghdam controlled by the Azerbaijani troops. Later, dead bodies of the villagers were found not far from the positions of Azerbaijani troops. The exact death toll remains unknown, with Baku publishing contradictory data. Parliamentary Commission investigating the tragic death of the civilians in Aghdam was dissolved by the order of Heydar Aliyev, with investigative materials kept secret.