World remembers victims of Azerbaijani genocide

World remembers victims of Azerbaijani genocide

On March 31st Azerbaijan marks the 98th anniversary of the Day of Genocide of the Azerbaijanis.

Today marks 98 years since the genocide committed against Azerbaijanis. From March 30th to April 2nd, 1918, Armenian armed units of the Nationalist Party 'Dashnaktsutyun' with the support of the leadership of the Baku Council, led by Stepan Shaumyan, committed mass murders of Azerbaijanis.

The objectives and nature of those events became known after the Republic of Azerbaijan regained its independence. The most characteristic feature was a discrepancy between the goals and aspirations of three national movements (Georgian, Azerbaijani and Armenian). In this context, the most important differences were between the Azerbaijani and the Armenian national movements.

Armenian dashnaks killed about 11 thousand people, including women, children and elderly in Baku on the night of March 30, 1918. 

The genocide of Azerbaijanis was particularly cruel in Baku, Shamakhi, Guba, Karabakh, Zangazur, Nakhchivan, Lenkaran and other regions. Many civilians in those areas were killed, the villages were burned to ashes and national monuments were razed to the ground.

Armenian dashnaks killed 8027 Azerbaijanis, including 2560 women and 1277 children in 53 villages of Shamakhy on March 31st. As many as 16,000 Azerbaijanis were murdered in 162 villages of Guba.

The Special Investigation Commission set up by the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic on July 15, 1918 gathered a great number of documents and submitted them to the government

In 1919, the Azerbaijani parliament made a decision on marking March 31st as the Day of Genocide of Azerbaijanis. Though this date was forgotten during the Soviet period, a lot of investigations on the tragedies committed on March 31, 1918, were carried out and books were published after Azerbaijan gained its independence.

A huge role in the restoration of historical justice was played by a national leader of the Azerbaijani people Heydar Aliyev.

Her issued a decree on March 26, 1998 to commemorate March 31st as the Day of Genocide of Azerbaijanis.