Kocharian’s remarks came on the 20th anniversary of the beginning of seven-day pogroms against Armenians in Azerbaijan’s capital city of Baku. The city-wide massacres followed similar attacks against Armenians in 1988 in Sumgait and Kirovabad.
“The events that took place in Baku in response to the demand of the people of Nagorno Karabakh for self-determination were the continuation of Azerbaijan’s policy of ethnic cleansing,” Koccharyan said.
“It caused a forced displacement of about 400,000 Armenians from Azerbaijan and a large-scale military invasion against the newly independent Nagorno Karabakh Republic, which resulted in heavy human and material losses,” he added.
Kocharyan said these past events make up an unbroken chain of anti-Armenian actions by Azerbaijan. “Rather than accepting responsibility for its crimes, Azerbaijan continues to threaten Armenia and the region with war,” he added.