ArmInfo. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia issued a statement on the occasion of the anniversary of the anti-Armenian pogroms in Sumgait. So, the statement of the Armenian Foreign Ministry, in particular, states: "Today we honor the memory of the victims of the anti-Armenian pogroms in Sumgait. At the end of February 1988, the Armenian population of Sumgait was subjected to mass killings and atrocities committed with indescribable cruelty.
The Sumgayit crime laid the foundation for the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict when Azerbaijan responded to the peaceful appeal of the people of Nagorno-Karabakh to self-determination by mass violence and pogroms of Armenians. This actually formed the essence of the Karabakh problem: ensuring the security of the people of Artsakh through the exercise of the right to self-determination outside of Azerbaijan. The Sumgayit crime was the first mass crime committed on the basis of identity on the European continent after the Second World War, followed by new crimes planned and carried out on a large scale by Azerbaijan in Baku, Kirovabad and the territories of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic-Shaumyan region occupied by Azerbaijan, separate sections of Martakert and Martuni.
An assessment by the Azerbaijani authorities of the Sumgayit massacre clearly illustrates the lack of readiness to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Over the past three decades, the tactics of the Azerbaijani authorities have changed from the heroization of criminals to the prosecution of victims for organizing pogroms. The unwillingness of the Azerbaijani side to assume any responsibility for the massive and most serious human rights violations on its territory and the presence of genocidal intentions regarding the Armenians remained unchanged.
Today, we honor the memory of the victims of the Sumgayit pogroms, confirming our determination to prevent the recurrence of such massacres against the Armenian people. "
Recall that ethnic unrest in the city of Sumgayit in the Azerbaijan SSR occurred on February 27-29, 1988. They were accompanied by massive violence against the Armenian population, robberies, killings, arson and destruction of property. According to the British journalist Tom de Waal, these events were "the first outbreak of mass violence in modern Soviet history." The Sumgait pogrom was a landmark event and a turning point in the aggravation of the ethnic conflict in Transcaucasia, which caused the first flows of Armenian refugees from Sumgait to Stepanakert and Armenia. According to the official data of the USSR Prosecutor General's Office, 26 citizens of Armenian ethnicity were killed and more than a hundred people were injured in the riots, while unofficial estimates say that the number of Armenians killed is hundreds During the clean-up operation, 276 military personnel received injuries of varying severity .. On February 29, 1988 at a meeting of the Politburo of the CPSU Central Committee in Moscow, it was officially recognized that the massacres and killings in Sumgait were carried out on a national basis, however, as indicated in the materials of the human rights activist Memorial Center, the lack of a timely investigation into the circumstances of the pogroms, the establishment and punishment of those responsible led to a further escalation of the Karabakh conflict.