Remembering the Maragha Massacres

The charred remains of an Armenian resident of Maragha village

On April 10, 1992, after a three-hour violent bombardment, the subunits of the Azerbaijani army invaded the village of Maragha from the Azerbaijani village of Mir-Bashir (now Tartar). As a result of this aggression hundreds of people were killed—mostly women, children, and elderly. Scores of people were taken hostages and later were exchanged, but the fate of many of them still remains unknown. Two weeks later, on April 22-23, the village was repeatedly attacked and the people who had come back to their burnt homes were forced to abandon the village once and for all.

The events in the village of Maragha became the precursor to more bloodshed at the hands of the Azeri Armed Forces, who later attacked Getashen, Martounashen, Buzlukh, Erkej and the other Armenian villages in the northern part of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic.

“In the history of the Azerbaijani-Karabakh conflict, fraught with numerous acts of atrocity and vandalism by Azerbaijan, the events in the village of Maragha in the Martakert district of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, are one of the most extreme manifestations of sadism and barbarity ever known to humanity,” said a statement issued Monday by the Foreign Ministry of the Nagorno-Karabakh Reopublic.

One of the first eyewitnesses on the scene was long-time human rights advocate and a Vice Speaker of the British House of Lords, Baroness Cox, who visited the village a day later.

“It was like Golgotha…” she said after witnessing the atrocities committed by the Azeri armed forces.

“They are not of the human race,” said the Baroness about the Azerbaijani servicemen who had carried out the slaughter. Baroness Cox took pictures and videotaped the atrocities committed by the Azerbaijanis in the village of Maragha and also described them in her book “Ethnic Cleansing in Progress,” as well as in her numerous interviews.

“It is impossible to describe what we saw there. The village was completely destroyed. The people were burying the dead, rather to say anything that was possible to bury, charred human remains, tortured, cut or sawed parts of bodies. We saw the bloody swords by which they had done all these brutalities. After killing the villagers the Azeris robbed and burnt the village. By the way, they told us that the servicemen were followed by the civilians with trunks who were going to finish the robbery, – and we saw some of those trunks scattered all over the land, which the looters did not manage to take away with them,” Baroness Cox said in describing the atrocities.

“In 1997, a number of human rights organizations conjointly prepared a comprehensive reference on the events in Maragha and submitted it to the UN Commission on Human Rights. The Helsinki Watch International Human Rights Organization officially confirmed that scores of civilians were killed and tens of women and children were taken hostage. However, the international media did not cover the massacre of the Armenians in Maragha at all and the international community has not given yet a corresponding assessment to these tragic events,” said the Karabakh Foreign Ministry statement.

“You have the most powerful weapon – the truth,” said Baroness Cox. “You should bring it to the international structures’ attention that Azerbaijan attempted to commit genocide against the population of Karabakh. You must more actively present to the world the mass crimes perpetrated against Armenians in Maragha, Sumgait, Baku, etc. These are crimes against humanity. I support the Armenians and comprehend that they will never be able to live under the Azerbaijani dominion, as the Armenians of Karabakh, who lived under the control of Azerbaijan, suffered much.”

“The massacre in the village of Maragha, which is still under Azerbaijan’s occupation, cannot be called a military operation, as there were no military bases in the village but only peaceful citizens, who became the main target of the aggression. The crimes were aimed at deporting the Armenian people from their homeland,” the Ministry said, adding that “the slaughter of unarmed civil population of Maragha is a crime against humanity and civilization, without period of limitation, and the perpetrators of this crime must carry punishment to the fullest extent of the law.”

The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic parliamentary blocs of Fatherland, Democracy parties and the Armenian Revolutionary Federation, as well as the “Artsakhatun” group issued a joint statement Tuesday to mark the 20th anniversary of the brutal massacres in Maragha.

“The operation was aimed at slaughtering and deporting the peaceful population of Maragha. As a result of the aggression hundreds of people were killed, deported or taken hostage,” said the parliamentary statement.

“Those responsible for the brutal crime committed in Maragha remain unpunished, and the village remains occupied. More than 1,000 former residents of Maragha now reside in different countries of the world,” explained the statement.

“Strongly condemning the crime committed in Maragha, the caucuses represented in the National Assembly categorize this as genocide and declare that they will ensure that the perpetrators and organizers of this crime against humanity are punished,” added the announcement.

The parliamentary blocs “will defend the rights of the Artsakh Armenians, including the restoration of the territorial integrity of the Republic of Artsakh, and will contribute to the continuous strengthening of the republic, viewing it as the most reliable guarantee of people’s security,” concluded the statement.

Watch videos of the afternath of the Maragha Massacres. WARNING: The videos contain scenes of grapghic nature, which may not be suitable for all viewers.

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13 Comments

  1. zohrab said:

    very sad asdvadz voghorme hokinin and lts never allow azeris ever to return

  2. Pingback: Baronesa Cox : Usted debe llamar la atención de las estructuras internacionales de los que Azerbaiyán intentado cometer genocidio contra la población de Karabaj.Usted debe presentar de manera más activa en el mundo de los crímenes masivos cometidos c

  3. Pingback: Baronesa Cox : Usted debe llamar la atención de las estructuras internacionales de los que Azerbaiyán intentado cometer genocidio contra la población de Karabaj.Usted debe presentar de manera más activa en el mundo de los crímenes masivos cometidos c

  4. Ani said:

    I truely hope that one day these azerbokjians will suffer ten times what my people have been through. I curse every breath that these azeri filth take.

    • Kevork said:

      Well said Ani, it truly disturbs the consciousness how these Turks and Azeris have treated Armenians and gotten away with it. I dream of the day for total justice to be served to these lowlifes who are unfit to be considered ‘Human’.

  5. Kevork said:

    To top it all off, that Aliyev clown barks day and night about invading Artsakh. As if the crimes they have been committing for more than 100 years were not enough. Meanwhile all the govts use our sad history like a pawn in their wicked political games.

  6. Vazken said:

    Filthy Azeri feet shall never again tread on a spec of holy Armenian soil in Artsakh and eventually Nakhichevan. Mongol Azeris should go back to the caves where they came from.

  7. Satenik said:

    Barbarians on the loose. Armenia has been so unlucky for having these animals as neighbours. May God punish them for generations to come. These pictures should be given to all those travelling to Baku for the Eurovision song contest. They will soon figure out that these barbarians have no relations to humans let alone Europe!
    Thank you Baroness Cox.
    May the souls of the innocent find eternal peace. Amen!

  8. Satenik said:

    And Israel sells arms to these animals! Is there anything they won’t sell for money?

  9. Ararat said:

    I think we should have a central website with pictures, text and video snippets of such barbaric acts against the Armenians by the Azerbaijani criminals to inform the public at large, if we don’t have one already. We must actively pursue educating the world about the Azeri acts of violence and racism towards Armenians to counter and expose all the Azeri propaganda lies about their false anti-Armenian claims in the liberated territories.

    I recently saw a poster picture of Azerbaijani false claims depicting a ditch with bodies in an anti-Armenian rally. I researched this further and came across a live video showing the same exact ditch with bodies taken in Kosovo in the Balkans. The sadistic, morally-bankrupt Azerbaijanis are using such dirty tactics to lie to the world and we must expose their lies.

    These people are a bunch of sore losers, a defeated nation and unable to deal with it. We must be vigilant in our resolve and hit them hard and when they are on their knees we must hit them even harder. Have no mercy on them and when the time comes and opportunity presents itself we must avenge the deaths of every single Armenian by Azeri criminals. One hundred Azeri lives for every Armenian.

    May God rest the souls of all Armenians butchered by these filthy barbaric Azeri gavurs.

  10. Stephen T. Dulgarian said:

    In regards to the Maragha massacres by the Azeri’s, we all know that the world powers have backed off in helping Christian Armenia in the return of all our territories that Stalin took away from the Armenian People. We all thought Russia when the Soviet Union died that they would back up the Armenian Nation on the return of all the territories Stalin took away from us. Not one nation has stood up against the Turks & Azeri’s using the excuse that Turkey is a strong Nato Ally & the Azeri’s have oil. Everything is dollars & cents & since Armenia has no strong resources, the world forgets the good people in this world.

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