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Rep. Chu Statement on Anniversary of Sumgait Pogroms

February 28, 2019
Press Release

On February 28, 1988, the Armenian population of Artsakh became the target of a violent pogrom which culminated in the violent expulsion of 390,000 Armenians. Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27) issued the following statement on the anniversary of that tragic violence:

“As the lines of the Soviet Union were fading, the people of Nagorno-Karabakh were united in a call for a say in their own futures and greater independence from Azerbaijan. This peaceful movement for self-determination and freedom was followed by premeditated and government-sponsored attacks.

“Over the next two years, the Armenian population in the territory of Artsakh was repeatedly victim to brutal and racially motivated pogroms, darkly reminiscent of the days of the Armenian Genocide. Hundreds were murdered, thousands were displaced, and the Armenian community – both in Artsakh and in exile - continues to bear the scars from the brutal attacks in Sumgait, Kirovabad, and Baku.

“When the people of Nagorno-Karabakh officially declared independence on December 10, 1991, they were met with full-scale war lasting until 1994. Even today, the people of Nagorno-Karabakh are still forced to live under constant ceasefire violations by Azerbaijan.

“As we commemorate the somber anniversary marking the struggle of the Nagorno-Karabakh people, we wish for the peaceful resolution of this conflict and hope that its citizens will be free to determine their own future.”