STEPANAKERT (Lusine Avanesyan, ArmRadio) — On a three-day visit to Artsakh Israeli genocide scholar Yair Auron had meetings with officials, youth and soldiers. He met with reporters in Stepanakert to share the impressions. The scholar confesses he didn’t know much about the Artsakh war.

As a genocide expert, Auron does not accept describing the events in Khojalu, as well as Sumgait and Baku as “genocide.” “Some people say the events in Khojalu constituted genocide, but they do not comply with the classical definition of genocide.” As for the events in Sumgait and Baku, the scholar said he has not conducted research on these concrete cases, but considers they should be called “massacres.”

Yair Auron confessed that on the first day of the visit the impressions were not that bright, but everything changed over the next two days.

“My impression on the first day was that you are week. Now I’m confident you are very strong, strong with your spirit.”

“I admire your struggle for self-determination,” he said. “This is your right and I with you every success,” the scholar added.

“After I met with the soldiers, I saw they are ready to continue the struggle with the same spirit. They have the resoluteness to fight, to master their own destiny. I admire that determination.”

Mr. Auron said he’s ashamed for the fact of Israel selling arms to Azerbaijan, knowing those will be used against the people of Karabakh.

“I go mad, when I think these weapons are used against you,” the scholar said.

According to Yair Auron, upon his return to Israel he will continue the struggle for the recognition of the Armenian Genocide. Besides, he will talk to his friends about Artsakh, its people and their struggle. He plans to visit Nagorno Karabakh again in summer.

On 21 February Artsakh President Bako Sahakian met with Yair Auron. A range of issues related to the history of the Armenian people, the Azerbaijani-Karabakh conflict settlement process and regional trends were touched upon during the meeting.

President Sahakian commended Yair Auron’s research on the history of the Armenian Genocide from academic and moral viewpoints, outlining that the professor’s works had a serious contribution to the studying and international recognition of the Armenian Genocide, as well as to cementing friendly ties between the Armenian and Jewish people.

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