California State Senators Anthony Portantino (D-25) and Andreas Borgeas (R-8) issued statements condemning Azerbaijan’s brazen attack on Armenia’s border that began on Sunday and lasted through Tuesday. Portantino is the chairman of the California State Senate Select Committee on California, Armenia and Artsakh Mutual Trade, Art and Cultural Exchange and Borgeas serves as a member of that select committee.
“Reports of recent aggressive actions taken by Azerbaijan at the Armenian border destabilize and adversely affect peace in the region. I extend my prayers for the families of the soldiers lost due to this unnecessary violence,” said Portantino in his statement.
“California is home to a vibrant Armenian American Community and my District is home to many Artsakh and Armenian veterans of the Nagorno-Karabakh fight for Independence. Their efforts over the past 30 years should not be undermined today. I encourage the US State Department to be more proactive in preserving peace in the region and all parties to cease fire,” added Portantino.
“Having personally visited Artsakh patriots at the border, I join the chorus of voices calling on Azerbaijan to allow international OSCE monitoring, immediately end all hostility and return to international peace negotiations. We are in an unprecedented international pandemic; this is the time for all of us to embrace peace over violent conflict,” he said.
Sen. Portantino penned an op-ed, which was published in Asbarez on Tuesday, calling for continued U.S. assistance to Artsakh for much-needed humanitarian de-mining efforts there.
“I have been in communication with Armenian and Artsakh officials and confirmed that Azerbaijan launched unprovoked military actions against Armenia,” said Senator Borgeas.
“Based on Azerbaijan’s past behavior, and having been extensively involved in Caucasus-related issues, this appears to be an orchestrated attempt to destabilize the region at the behest of Turkey. It is terribly coincidental that Azerbaijan’s military aggression comes on the heels of the European Union considering Greece’s proposed sanctions against Turkey,” he added.
“I stand in solidarity with Armenians and Greeks who continue to suffer from Azeri and Turkish provocations, as the latter’s proxy and religious agendas are dangerously intertwined,” said Borgeas.
“The ANCA Western Region welcomes these powerful condemnations of Azerbaijan’s latest attack by California State Senators Portantino and Borgeas,” said Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region Executive Director Armen Sahakyan. “It is critical to hold the regime in Baku accountable for their aggression, and we will keep working with all key stakeholders across the board to ensure that.”