The Azerbaijani Embassy in Rome has hosted a commemorative event dedicated to the 31st anniversary of the Khojaly genocide.
Many public figures, members of the Italian parliament, state officials, diplomatic corps representatives, local media, and members of the Azerbaijani community took part in the event, co-organized by Heydar Aliyev Foundation and the Azerbaijani Embassy in Italy at the embassy’s cultural center, Azernews reports.
The Azerbaijani Ambassador to Italy Rashad Aslanov opened the event with an introductory speech.
In his speech, Rashad Aslanov pointed out that the Khojaly genocide was one of the most heinous crimes committed by Armenia against civilians 31 years ago.
Some 613 civilians were killed in one night because of their ethnicity, which is a clear manifestation of the ethnic cleansing policy pursued by Armenia.
He added that the Khojaly genocide is the grossest violation of the norms and principles of international humanitarian law.
In his remarks, Aslanov underlined that the remembrance of war, genocide, and crimes against humanity is also important in terms of guaranteeing the punishment of those who committed them and preventing them from happening again.
As a result of the 44-day Patriotic War, Azerbaijan restored justice and its territorial integrity under the leadership of President Ilham Aliyev.
Launched by Vice-President of the Foundation Leyla Aliyeva, the Justice for Khojaly campaign has made a significant contribution to the legal and political assessment of the crimes committed in Khojaly.
In her speech, Heydar Aliyev Foundation’s representative Fidan Yusibova outlined that the Khojaly genocide that took place in front of the eyes of the world at the end of the last century was a crime committed not only against our compatriots but against humanity as a whole.
She pointed out that it is impossible to forget the tragedy of Khojaly due to its scale and cruelty, and this history is forever engraved in the blood memory of the Azerbaijani people.
This tragedy is the bloody page of the genocide policy and ethnic cleansing committed by aggressive Armenian separatists against the Azerbaijani people.
Conveying the truth about the crimes committed by Armenian nationalists against Azerbaijani people, as well as the truth about the Khojaly genocide to the world community has been always one of the prior directions of President Ilham Aliyev’s activities.
Fidan Yusibova emphasized that the First Vice-President of Azerbaijan, President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mehriban Aliyeva had played an exceptional role in raising awareness about the Khojaly genocide worldwide.
Justice for the Khojaly campaign, which is set up to spread true facts about the Khojaly genocide, is also of special importance.
Yusibova added that the campaign made a great contribution to the process of recognizing the fact of genocide abroad.
The main purpose of the campaign is to inform the international community about the Khojaly genocide, to remember the victims of this tragedy, and to ensure that this tragedy is not forgotten, especially by the younger generation.
Thanks to the campaign, many countries have been informed about the inhumane killings of Armenian terrorists.
So far, more than ten countries and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) have adopted decisions and resolutions recognizing the crimes committed by Armenians in Khojaly as genocide.
“Thanks to Azerbaijan’s victory in the 44-day Patriotic War under the leadership of President, Supreme Commander-in-Chief Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijan commemorates the victims of the Khojaly genocide as a victorious nation. Today, like all our martyrs, the victims of the Khojaly genocide were avenged,” said Yusibova.
Moreover, the 13-year-old member of the Azerbaijani community in Italy, Ilduze Sadigxanova brought to the attention of the participants of the event in Italian the stories from the book “They will never grow up”, authored by the living witness of the Khojaly genocide, Sariya Muslim-qizi Jafarova, and dedicated to the victims of the Khojaly genocide.
Famous pianist, Honored Artist Islam Manafov and acclaimed conductor and musician, Honored Artist Turan Manafzada performed Azerbaijani and world classical works. The concert program also included Abuzar Manafzada’s music piece Khojaly.
Furthermore, the guests of the event got acquainted with a photo exhibition timed to the 31st anniversary of the Khojaly genocide.