I am writing to ask you to immediately place a hold on all State Department nominees until the Biden Administration takes decisive action to break Azerbaijan’s 260+ day genocidal blockade of Nagorno-Karabakh’s (Artsakh) indigenous Christian population. Sadly, our State Department has manifestly failed to meaningfully confront Azerbaijan, while our Department of Defense continues actively aiding and materially abetting the military of a country starving Armenians to death. This is immoral and entirely inconsistent with our U.S. interests and American values.
Absent urgent and immediate American leadership, Azerbaijan will complete its genocide of Nagorno Karabakh, a crime already underway according to a landmark report issued recently by Luis Moreno Ocampo, the first prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. As you know, Azerbaijan has failed to abide by the binding provisional order issued by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) that requires Azerbaijan to open the Lachin Corridor.
A hold on U.S. diplomatic nominees should remain in place until the Biden Administration has undertaken demonstrable steps to:
— Lead a United Nations Security Council Resolution condemning Azerbaijan’s blockade of Artsakh, sanctioning the Aliyev regime, and putting in place mechanisms to open land transit via the Lachin Corridor and to airlift supplies to Artsakh.
— Stop any new, current, or pending U.S. military or security assistance to Azerbaijan, and fully enforce Section 907 of the FREEDOM Support Act;
— Deliver emergency U.S. humanitarian assistance and longer-term development aid to the Armenian victims of Azerbaijani aggression in Nagorno Karabakh, including by means of a humanitarian airlift;
— Enforce statutory sanctions against Azerbaijani officials responsible for the genocidal blockade of Nagorno Karabakh.
Thank you in advance for your thoughtful consideration of my request that you immediately place a hold on all State Department nominees up and until that time when the Biden Administration has taken definitive and demonstrable steps to have Azerbaijan open the Lachin Corridor and avert a second Armenian Genocide.