Commentary of the NKR MFA Information Department
We would like to send you the materials (commentary) on Maragha events (NKR Martakert region) prepared by the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (Armenian, Russian and English). Thus, we kindly ask your assistance for publishing, highlighting and posting these materials through mass media of the Armenian Diaspora, and if there is an opportunity, also through other media of your country of residence.
Meanwhile, we kindly request you to organize respective meetings, discussions on above-mentioned theme in the framework of the Armenian community representatives, as well as to conduct activities for introducing and disseminating these obvious facts within the public frameworks of your country of residence.
This will be an adequate measure to be taken for the struggling and resisting the Azerbaijani anti-Armenian campaign in the international platforms.
RA Ministry of Diaspora
Head of Departement of
Armenian Communities of Europe,
Ministry of Diaspora RA
Chef du Département des
Communautés Arméniennes de l’Europe
Ministère de la Diaspora RA
Tel. 0037410 58 56 01 (112)
Mob. 0037491 61 00 77
In the history of the Azerbaijani-Karabakh conflict, abounding in numerous facts of atrocity and vandalism by Azerbaijan, the events in the village of Maragha of the NKR Martakert region are one of the most extreme manifestations of sadism and barbarity ever known to
On April 10, 1992, after a three-hour preparatory bombardment, the subunits of the Azerbaijani regular army invaded the village of Maragha from the Azerbaijani village of Mir- Bashir (now Tartar).
As a result of the aggression 100 people were massacred - mostlywomen, children, and elderly persons.
Scores of people were taken hostages and later were exchanged but the fate of many of them still remains unknown. Two weeks later, on April 22-23, the village was repeatedly attacked and the people who had come back to their burnt homes were forced to abandon the village once and for all.
The monstrous crimes in Maragha followed the Armenian pogroms and deportations in the Northern Atsakh, Baku, Sumgait, Kirovabad and other settlements of Azerbaijan and were
aimed at frightening the people and disabling them to live in their homeland. By the depth
of human tragedy, the level of cruelty, the number of people exposed to violence and captured, the events in the village of Maragha occupy a special place among the bloody crimes committed by Azerbaijan in Getashen, Martounashen, Buzlukh, Erkej and the other Armenian villages in the northern part of the NKR in 1991-1992.
Vice Speaker of the House of Lords of the British Parliament Baroness Caroline Cox, who visited the place of the tragedy several days later, was shocked at what she saw. “They are not of human race” –said the Baroness about the Azerbaijani servicemen who had carried out the slaughter. Baroness Caroline Cox both took pictures and video-taped those atrocities
committed by the Azerbaijanis in the village of Maragha and also described them in her book
"Ethnic Cleansing in Progress”, as well as in her numerous interviews.
“It is impossible to describe what we saw there. The village was completely destroyed.
people were burying the dead, rather to say anything that was possible to bury, charred human remains, tortured, cut or sawed parts of bodies. We saw the bloody swords by which they had done all these brutalities. After killing the villagers the Azeris robbed and burnt the village. By the way, they told us that the servicemen were followed by the civilians with
trunks who were going to finish the robbery, - and we saw some of those trunks scattered all over the land, which the looters did not manage to take away with them”, - witnessed Caroline Cox.
Seda Poghosyan, an eyewitness of the tragic events, who was saved by a miracle told. “The women, elderly people and children were hiding themselves in the basements and dugouts.
On the third day – on April 10, 1992, the Azeris invaded Maragha. Several people came up to the dugout where I along with my daughter-in-law Marine and our two children – 4-yearold Karen and 2-year-old Vigen were hidden. The Azeris commanded us to get out of the
dugout. The first was an old man Sasha, Asya and Zabel followed him. As soon as a man was getting out of the dugout he was immediately killed. My daughter-in-law leaving her children with me also walked up the stairs. The Azeri, with a knife in his hands prepared for stab, stopped and began tearing away her jewellery. Then he tore her dress. She broke into a
run, the Azerbaijani rushed after her. The exit from the dugout was open. People dashed for the exit. They were noticed by the Azerbaijanis who were busy with robbery and threw themselves to kill with axes, knives and scythes. Masya and Ruben Ananyans were overcut
immediately. I saw how my daughter-in-law’s sister Karina was trying to escape from the executioners.
Larisa Badalyan, a resident of the village of Maragha, was held hostage by the Azeris from April 10 till December 2, 1992.
“Women, Zoya, Masho and Tamara, were led out of the cell by turn, and brought back blood-stained and half-naked. In an hour the door opened, the armed soldiers burst into the cell and pulled off the remains of their clothes and raped.
Three days later we were brought to a prison in Kubatly, where I saw my son Apres, who was mentally ill. His eye came out, his head was swollen. A young Armenian from Martakert was on the floor beaten up to death... My son served as a shepherd, I did chores. We slept in
a barrack, ate leavings. My son was often beaten up before my eyes. Once they brought a
body of a dead Azerbaijani and they wanted to overcut us on his grave…”- she witnessed.
In 1997, a number of human rights organizations conjointly prepared a comprehensive reference on the events in Maragha and submitted it to the UN Commission on Human Rights. The Helsinki Watch International Human Rights Organization officially confirmed that scores of civilians were martyrized and tens of women and children were taken hostages. However, the international media did not cover the massacre of the Armenians in Maragha at all and the international community has not given yet a corresponding assessment to these tragic events.
“You have the most powerful weapon – the truth – said Baroness Cox. You should bring it to the international structures’ notice that Azerbaijan attempted to commit genocide against the population of Karabakh. You must more actively present to the world the mass crimes
perpetrated against Armenians in Maragha, Sumgait, Baku, etc. These are crimes against
humanity. I support the Armenians and comprehend that they will never be able to live under the Azerbaijani dominion, as the Armenians of Karabakh, who lived under the control of Azerbaijan, suffered much”.
The massacre in the village of Maragha, which is still under Azerbaijan’s occupation, cannot be called a military operation, as there were no military bases in the village but only peaceful citizens, who became the main target of the aggression. The crimes were aimed at deporting the Armenian people from their homeland.
Summarizing the abovementioned, we should state that the slaughter of unarmed civil population of Maragha is a crime against humanity and civilization, without period of limitation, and the perpetrators of this crime must carry punishment to the fullest extent of