STEPANAKERT ( — The premiere of the documentary film “The Besieged” was held at Vallex Garden Cinema of Stepanakert, Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh Republic) on April 30. The documentary tells about the sufferings of the Stepanakert residents under Azerbaijani blockade in 1991-1992, featuring witness accounts, reports citing Artsakhpress news agency.

The film has been produced by the Public Relations and Information Center affiliated with the Armenian President’s Office and is authored by political scientists Armen Minasyan and Hrant Melik-Shahnazaryan.

“We have tried to present the events that occurred in Artsakh in 1992. The film is solely based on eyewitness accounts. We have met many people, listened to their stories. The film ends with the liberation of Shushi. Our goal was not only to present the tragedy, but also the spirit of the Artsakh Liberation War. The is set to be translated into Russian and English,” Artsakhpress quotes Armen Minasyan as saying.

Co-author of the film, political scientist Hrant Melik-Shahnazaryan in his turn noted: “In my opinion we need to have materials of documentary films to be able to use that documentary evidence of the propaganda machine in cases of necessity. The film will be presented to the international community through the course of time. We are convinced that the evidence presented through such footage, the real essence of the war the siege are our greatest arguments to defend the fair cause of the Artsakh issue.”

Speaking about his impressions from the film, Artak Beglaryan, Press Secretary of NKR Prime Minister, said that “The Besieged” is highly interesting as it features serious documentary materials presented namely in forms of interviews and eyewitness testimonies.

“The film once again comes to prove that we were forced to engage in liberation battles to defend ourselves and to save our country. It shows that the target of the Azerbaijani forces was the civil settlements right from the very beginning. It is Azerbaijan that unleashed the war, which was not directed against our self-defense forces, but rather against the civilians. The film is also important in a sense that its authors intend to have it translated into several languages. They can become serious tools for the international community, the people studying the topic, as well as for the media workers in the future. Azerbaijan will certainly react after the film translation. I guess they may attempt to hinder the film screening in certain areas and online platforms.

However their reaction to such films generally leaves the opposite effect, as it ensures additional propaganda over the Artsakh topic both for the Azerbaijani and the international community,” A. Beglaryan concluded.
The film screening was attended by political figures of Artsakh, as well as people shot in the film, intellectuals and the others.

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