Dear Senator / Representative:
I am writing to ask you to speak out in Congress and via social media in condemnation and commemoration of Azerbaijan’s past and ongoing aggression against the citizens of the independent Republic of Artsakh, also known as Nagorno Karabakh.
As you know, the citizens of Artsakh – in one of the first pro-democracy protests against the Soviet Empire – petitioned peacefully in the late 1980s against their arbitrary and immoral separation from Armenia by Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin. Azerbaijan, rather than welcoming this move toward self-determination, responded with violent attacks against Armenian civilians across Azerbaijan, starting with the Sumgait pogroms in February of 1988. Further pogroms – as part of a systemic effort to ethnically cleanse Azerbaijan of Armenians – took place in Kirovabad (November 1988), and Baku (January 1990), followed by an all-out, but failed, war of aggression by Baku to subjugate the free people of Nagorno Karabakh.
Members of Congress have traditionally made statements in February and March to mark this brutal chapter in Artsakh’s historic struggle for independence, a pro-democracy drive credited by many with sparking the eventual downfall of the Soviet Union. This year, we are asking you to please consider speaking about the broader context of how Azerbaijan’s massacres emboldened it to launch a major war against Artsakh in the fall of 2020. It would be especially meaningful if you could, in your message, call for a ban on all U.S. military or security aid to Azerbaijan.
I hope you can speak on the floor, submit a Congressional Record statement, or post to social media on these issues. If you should have any questions on this topic, please contact the Armenian National Committee of America at (202) 775-1918.
Thank you for your consideration of my concerns.