ANCA Asks White House Congress to Protest Azeri Talk of Armenia’s End

WASHINGTON–DC–In letters sent to the White House and all Member of Congress on Thursday–the Armenian National Committee Of America (ANCA) called for a forceful–public protest of open threats by a senior Azerbaijani military official against the continued existence of the Republic of Armenia. On August 5–Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported that the chief spokesman for Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry–Colonel Ramiz Melikov–publicly stated that "within the next 25-years there will exist no state of Armenia in the South Caucasus." He added: "Modern Armenia is built on historical Azerbaijani lands…I think that in 25-30 years’ times its territory will again come under Azerbaijan’s jurisdiction." According to FRE/RL–Melikov made these remarks to the Baku-based daily newspaper "Zerkalo."

In its letters to members of Congress–the ANCA underlined the fact that "these threats were not made by a professor–a columnist–or a private Azerbaijani citizen. They were made–on the record in a major publication–by the chief spokesperson for the Azerbaijani Ministry of Defense."

Within the letter to the White House–ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian noted that it would be a "grave error for our government to dismiss these remarks as rhetoric–or to address them solely through diplomatic channels. Rather–we expect our government to forcefully and publicly confront the Azerbaijani government over these patently hateful and destabilizing threats. Failure to do so would send extremely dangerous signals to Baku."

For the full text of the RFE/RL report–visit:

http://www.armenialiberty.org/armeniareport/report/en/2004/08/B401A

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