The Armenian International Women’s Association (AIWA) Board of Directors, Affiliate Chairs, Committee members and community members in the United States of America and internationally are appalled and distressed by gross violations of international humanitarian law due to the large-scale armed attack unleashed against Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabagh) and the outburst of armed conflict in the region.
Since December 12, 2022, Azerbaijan has maintained a blockade of the Lachin corridor, Artsakh’s only humanitarian lifeline to Armenia and the rest of the world leaving 120,000 indigenous ethnic Armenians without food, fuel, medicine and other humanitarian supplies and aid. Additionally, the blocked road prevents thousands of people many of whom are children, stranded and unable to return to their homes during the dire winter. The battlefield is in their backyard. Children will grow up deprived of their maternal and emotional needs, including the structures that give meaning to social and cultural life. The entire fabric of their societies–their homes, schools, health systems and religious institutions are torn to pieces. Women and children are the beating heart of their family and community, and it is a known fact that women suffer disproportionately during and after war especially when widowed.
This blockade is an attack on the Armenian people and a direct violation of recent agreements between Azerbaijan and Armenia as brokered by Russia, and a gross violation of basic human rights. We call for immediate global unity and demand local and international responses to Azerbaijan’s Human Rights violations and attempts at a continued attritive genocide. We submit our appeal to you and other experts to use your expertise in human rights and humanitarian law and utilize all possible avenues to end Azerbaijani blockade and stop the looming humanitarian disaster in Artsakh.
We cannot be impassive. As a people who have experienced the toxic legacy of genocide of 1915, we have looked to a brighter future built on the secure knowledge of nations and organizations upholding the principles of universal humanity. We demand that the international community take immediate action to supply Artsakh with necessary aid, negotiate and stop the blockade without delay.
President AIWA Board of Directors, AIWA Affiliate Chairs,AIWA Committee members
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