By Nona Ghazaryan
Aravot-en.am On the eve of the 28th anniversary of the events in Khojaly, Azeri affairs expert Anzhela Elibegova emphasized at the Zarkerak press club was one of the towns used to bombard Stepanakert. It was clear to Azerbaijan that the town needed to be neutralized, but they deliberately did not warn the citizens so that it could continue to play the role of the protector and continue firing upon Armenians. It is notable that, during this time, people who had nothing to do with Azerbaijan began to live in Khojaly, which is why the number of residents had greatly increased. According to Elibegova, the Azeri side is using this as propaganda to try and prove that the Armenian side carried this out. They are trying to convince people that Armenia committed genocide, but the Armenian side is working on revealing the fallacies contained in Azeri propaganda films and websites. “Lots of people were saved when the city was turned over to the Armenians. Around 700 civil residents of Khojaly were able to safely move to Azerbaijan thanks to the Armenians. Due to the blockade in Stepanakert, there was a food shortage, and there was no way for these people to live there,” the expert said.
Elibegova also said that it was not only one group that was saved by the Armenians. “It’s interesting that the other part went to Aghdam via the evacuation corridor opened by the Armenians. Aghdam was under Azeri control. The civilians did not reach Aghdam because the Azeris made an announcement that caused them to panic. This is when the gunfire began, and that’s when those people were killed.” Regarding the distortion of facts, Elibegova noted that the Azeri journalist photographed the dead bodies on the 28th and in the days following. It became clear from those photos that the people had been tortured and their bodies were defiled in order to blame the Armenians. “Azerbaijan has falsified lists of dead people many times by writing the same names multiple times or by including the names of people who have nothing to do with Azeris. They did this in the hope that Armenians would not check these lists. Azerbaijan is using fake photos that have nothing to do with what happened in Khojaly.”