The Sumgait pogroms in testimonies of Azerbaijani eyewitnesses presented in Yerevan

A new documentary and a book, telling about Sumgait pogroms of the civilian Armenian population in Azerbaijani town, were presented today in Yerevan within the framework of the “Ordinary Genocide” project.

The book, titled “Sumgait: Azerbaijani eyewitnesses speak out,” is a unique collection of Azerbaijani eyewitness accounts to the events, the author of the “Ordinary Genocide” project Marina Grigoryan told reporters on Tuesday.

“Evidences by Azerbaijani residents of the town come to prove that the massacres were plotted and committed by Azerbaijani leadership, while only few from thousands of offenders were held responsible. The government never saw to the punishment of the perpetrators,” Grigoryan said, adding: “During the investigation and later the trials Azerbaijanis themselves confirmed that exclusively the Armenians were at the target of those unspeakable atrocities. People were explicitly announcing they were looking for Armenians and were killing the Armenian residents of the town. The testimonies reflect facts that the mobs had the addresses of the Armenian residents,” Grigoryan summarized some of the facts, adding the Azerbaijani eyewitness accounts also confirm the number of civilian casualties of the three-day massacres far outnumber the officially declared number of the 27 killed.

Grigoryan reminded that the Sumgait pogroms were one of the main directions of the series of “Ordinary Genocide” project that had produced numerous brochures, books, a documentary and a website thus far.

“The greatest achievement has been the creation of the archive. All the materials and footages were digitized and were used in the films, the published books as well as posted on Karabakhrecords
website,” Grigoryan added.

Head of the Foundation against Violation of Law NGO, ex-ombudsperson Larisa Alaverdyan, present at the press conference, said that the new documents and reports providing some unknown details of the the crime have surfaced due to the work of the Armenians throughout the world that would ultimately allow to restore the complete picture of the crimes.

Speaking of the new documentary titled “Sumgait: A Killed Generation,” Alaverdyan noted the film is about the Azerbaijani adults, even children, who were involved in the violent actions against Armenians that in her words, was characteristic of genocidal acts.

To remind, the “Ordinary Genocide” project is implemented by the Center of Information and Public Relations in the Office of the Armenian President.

To remind, this year, the 30th anniversary of Sumgait and the 27th anniversary of the Baku pogroms of the Armenians have been commemorated. On 26-29 February 1988 in terms of actual complicity of local authorities and inaction of the USSR government mass pogroms of civilians were organized in Sumgait city of Azerbaijani SSR, accompanied with unprecedented brutal murders, violence and pillaging against the Armenian population of the city. According to official data, 27 Armenians were killed; however, there is ample evidence that several hundred Armenians have been killed in the city in three days.