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Assembly Cites The Christian Post's Article in Calls for Release of Armenian POWs

Washington, D.C. - As the two-year mark approaches of the signing of the November 2020 ceasefire statement that required Armenia and Azerbaijan to "exchange prisoners of war, hostages and other detained persons," Azerbaijan has taken no action to adhere to the requirements of the agreement and continues to unlawfully hold Armenian prisoners as hostages. The Armenian Assembly of America (Assembly) urges the Biden Administration and Congress to aid in releasing Armenian POWs, which total over 100 people, according to the International Committee of the Red Cross. In addition, the Assembly calls for the U.S. to provide significant aid to help post-war Artsakh rebuild, including humanitarian aid to help displaced Armenians, all of which builds upon the recommended $2 million in demining assistance in the Fiscal Year 2023 Appropriations Bill. In a recent article published in The Christian Post, titled "When Will Christians Stand Up for the Armenians?", journalist Uzay Bulut warns of yet "another genocide at the hands of Muslim Turks and Azeris" against the Armenians. She highlights the recent "Red Flag Alert" issued by the Lemkin Institute for Genocide Prevention regarding the governments of Azerbaijan and Turkey, and their plans of a possible new genocide against the Armenian population. Bulut highlights the underreporting of atrocities executed against the Armenian people, including the torture and abuse of Armenian POWs, particularly a recent video that triggered the Lemkin Institute to issue the Red Flag Alert against Azerbaijan. In the video, an Azerbaijani soldier allegedly ties an Armenian skull, dug up from a nearby Armenian cemetery, to the back of military truck as soldiers cheer the revolting action. While Congress and the U.S. State Department have called for Azerbaijan to release all prisoners of war, including in a statement released on May 27, 2021, wherein Spokesperson Ned Price stated that the "United States is concerned by recent developments developments along the international border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, including the detention of several Armenian soldiers by Azerbaijani forces..." and that "Azerbaijan of its obligations under international humanitarian law to treat all detainees humanely," these calls have fallen on deaf ears. "Although almost two years have passed since the mandated release of Armenian POWs and captured civilians, which continues to be ignored by Azerbaijan and the Aliyev regime, Armenian Americans must continue to advocate and fight for their release by appealing to the Biden Administration and their elected officials," said Assembly Congressional Relations Director Mariam Khaloyan. "Enforcing Section 907 of the FREEDOM Support Act is critical, as is pressing Congress to pressure Azerbaijan to adhere to the trilateral ceasefire agreement, instead of allowing the Aliyev regime to double down on human rights violations."

Established in 1972, the Armenian Assembly of America is the largest Washington-based nationwide organization promoting public understanding and awareness of Armenian issues. The Assembly is a non-partisan, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt membership organization.


NR# 2022-37

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