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 Monday, June 5 2023 21:41
Marianna Mkrtchyan

Baroness Cox warns Artsakh: The consequence of a nation accepting a  false sense of peace will be loss of its homeland and exile

Baroness Cox warns Artsakh: The consequence of a nation accepting a  false sense of peace will be loss of its homeland and exile

ArmInfo.Member of the UK House of Lords, Baroness Caroline Cox  has sent a letter to the people of  Nagorno-Karabakh, who have been under the Azerbaijani blockade since December 12, 2022 against the backdrop of inaction and connivance by the international community.

In herletter, the Baroness writes in part:  ''To the people of the  Republic of Artsakh, for whom I have profound affection and deep  respect.  'I write to you today because 120,000 innocent civilians  face an existential crisis. Conditions are now present for genocide  against the Armenian Christians of Artsakh.

 Your people have suffered, and continue to suffer, the most serious  international crimes. I have personally witnessed the results of  massacres, atrocities and forced displacement.

Yet the world has chosen to turn a deaf ear to your suffering. Even  your closest international allies have either not paid attention to,  or ignored, the warning signs of genocide.

During this darkest hour, I stand in solidarity with the Armenians of  Artsakh. I have great confidence in your ability to overcome this  crisis with courage, fortitude, sacrifice and love - not only will   you survive but you will create beauty from the ashes of   destruction.  I am told that I have visited the Republic of Artsakh  88 times since 1990. I have been privileged to experience the love of  your history and your rich culture of music, dance and art - all  within the context of the breathtaking beauty of your land's rugged  mountains, thick forests, fertile valleys and crystal rivers. I have  been blessed to meet a host of wonderful people, many the direct  descendants of victims of the Great Genocide in Anatolia, or  themselves victims of anti Armenian pogroms in Sumgait and Baku, and  ethnic-religious cleansing in Artsakh.

I am struck by the unanimity with which they share a simple common  goal: it is to live in peace, dignity and security in their own  historic land. This longing continues to fill my heart. I always  carry with me the memory of a young woman I met in a hospital in  Martakert in 1992, after I had visited the village of Maragha, which  had just been subjected to a massacre inflicted by Azerbaijan.   Whilst in the remains of the village, I saw corpses of civilians  decapitated by Azerbaijani militants; vertebrae still on the ground;  people's blood still smeared on walls; homes that had been set alight  were still smoldering. The day I met this woman, she was in agony  over the deaths of her son and fourteen of her relatives who had been  killed in the 2 massacre in Maragha. I wept with her.  There are no  words for a time like that. But when she stopped weeping, I asked her  if she had a message she would like to share with the world. She  replied, "All I want to say is thank you to those people who have not  forgotten us in these terrible days."

I do not think "thank you" are the words that would have come to my  mind on the day I had seen so many of my family killed in such  horrific circumstances. That is the dignity of the Armenian people.  If I could speak to this woman today, I would tell her: "We love you  and we have not forgotten you, even as the dark cloud of the Armenian  Genocide, once again, looms over the mountains of your land." During  the previous war, I met an Armenian man who had seen the body of a  five-year-old Armenian girl, cut in two, hanging from the branch of a  tree. He wept with horror and vowed revenge.

Later, when his section of the Karabakh army captured villages, he  could not bring himself to harm an Azerbaijani child. When this story  was told at a dinner - in the Armenian style of making speeches - a  journalist commended the man for his humanity and dignity.  To which  he replied: "Dignity is a crown of thorns." The people of Artsakh  have been wearing your crown of thorns with inspirational courage and  dignity. I have never been as concerned about Artsakh's future as I  am today.

Azerbaijan's conquest and ethnic-religious cleansing of two thirds of  Artsakh in 2020, with the direct assistance of Turkey and its allied  jihadist militias; its detention, torture and killing of Armenian  hostages; its subsequent military incursions and occupation of  territory belonging to the Republic of Armenia; its current blockade  of Artsakh; and its territorial claims on the whole of Armenia all  bear witness to this grim reality. Conditions are present for  genocide against the Armenian Christians of Artsakh. However,  signatories to the Genocide Convention - including the United States,  France and my own Government in the United Kingdom - have refused  their legal obligation to prevent the worst from happening, to  provide protection to those who need it, and to punish those who are  responsible for atrocities.

Not one nation appears willing to prevent, provide or protect. I am  deeply disturbed by reports that the Republic of Armenia is being  pressured by international powers to contemplate sacrificing your  homeland of Artsakh to the Republic of Azerbaijan in return for a  so-called peace treaty. If reports are to be believed, those involved  in the negotiation process say that the treaty will secure the  borders of the Republic of Armenia and allow trade to open up with  the Turkish world.

My dear friends, as you are aware, these promises of peace and  prosperity come at a price. If the treaty is signed in its current  form, you would be expected to surrender your international right of  self-determination. You would be expected to concede control over  your lives, liberty and land. To use a recent phrase from the  Armenian Supreme Spiritual Council: By "recognising the Republic of  Artsakh as part of Azerbaijan, the Armenian authorities will  inevitably confront our brothers and sisters in Artsakh with a new  genocide and depatriation."

If a peace treaty is signed and later broken by Azerbaijan, history  has shown that international powers would not be willing to respond.   During the Russian[1]brokered ceasefire in November 2020, Azerbaijan  promised to `stop at their current positions' yet its armed forces  have since advanced into new positions with impunity. Azerbaijan  promised `the exchange of prisoners of war', yet dozens of Armenian  military and civilian personnel remain in Azerbaijani custody, many  of whom have undergone speedy criminal trials.  Azerbaijan has not  been held to account for breaking the 2020 ceasefire.

One can only suspect that an agreement that results from present-day  negotiations, in their current form, will not guarantee peace for the  Armenians of Artsakh. One of my great fears is the annihilation of  all Armenian churches, monuments and other cultural and spiritual  treasures, which would fall under Azerbaijan's control. Many Armenian  sites have already been targeted and badly damaged since 2020,  including the world-famous Ghazanchetsots Cathedral in Shushi, an  archaeological camp near Tigranakert, and a memorial dedicated to the  victims of the previous war.

 We must not forget the systematic erasure of centuries-old Armenian  religious sites in Nakhchivan, including the attack on the Armenian  Djulfa cemetery, where Azerbaijani soldiers, armed with sledgehammers  and cranes, destroyed hundreds of hand-carved cross-stones. Under  Azerbaijan's control, there are strong grounds for belief that  another `Nakhichevan' would be imposed in Artsakh - a priceless part  of humanity's common cultural heritage will be destroyed.

I keep in mind a lesson from the Bible. In the last days of the  kingdom of Judah, the Prophet Jeremiah lamented that his countrymen  were saying, "`Peace, peace,' when there is no peace." In that case,  the consequence of the nation accepting a false sense of peace was  the loss of its homeland and exile in a foreign country.

 When I was a young child, my own country was isolated and facing its  darkest hour. Great Britain was existentially threatened by an  ultra-nationalistic, genocidal dictatorship. Our then Prime Minister,  Neville Chamberlain, promised the nation "peace in our time", but  there was no peace. His successor, Winston Churchill assumed the post  of Prime Minister promising the nation nothing more 4 than "blood,  toil, sweat and tears". But the indescribable price of `blood, toil,  sweat and tears' resulted in the privilege we now enjoy of living in  freedom.

It is my hope and prayer that the long-suffering Armenian nation will  continue to strive for the opportunity to live in peace and dignity  in your own land. This is the blessing that my family and I, along  with all Britons, enjoy. For that great privilege I am deeply  indebted to those in my nation who, over eighty years ago, chose to  endure a great sacrifice, rather than accepting a false promise of  peace.  Please be assured of my continued daily prayers, and of my  continued advocacy on your behalf.

Every one of you means much to me and to many others around the  world. I pray for God's blessing on you all and that you will long  live in a free Armenia and free Artsakh.''

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Ирина
Спасибо Вам, баронесса Кокс за участие в судьбе армянского народа. Межд. организации осуждая, не препятствуют агрессии Аз. Ф.НАНСЕН ученый, комиссар Лиги Наций 1914-18гг. осуждая геноцид армян, требовал от европейских стран положить конец волоките, козням вокруг вопроса армян. Ф. Нансен в книге “В Армении” в 1927г. писал “… В конце концов это была лишь одна истребленная нация, хотя талантливая и маленькая, но не имевшая нефтеносных месторождений,... . Дух армянского народа невозможно сломить. Цивилизованное сообщество должно прогрессировать в защите общечеловеческих ценностей

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