Rep. Adam Schiff and Ambassador Varuzhan Nersesyan – Facebook photo

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank), released the following statement:

“This morning I spoke to Ambassador Varuzhan Nersesyan, Armenia’s representative to the United States, about the continuing conflict in Artsakh. We discussed Azerbaijan’s ongoing military campaign, aided and abetted by Turkey and the foreign fighters it is bringing in from Syria, and which has killed hundreds and displaced up to half of the civilian population of Artsakh. We also discussed Azerbaijan’s deliberate bombing of a historic Armenian Church, the Ghazanchetsots Cathedral, in the city of Shushi.

“For decades, through the OSCE Minsk Group, the United States has supported a peaceful, democratic, and negotiated resolution to the dispute surrounding Nagorno Karabakh. We have persisted in this policy even as Azerbaijan launched countless assaults and as their leadership frequently threatened war to redraw the line of contact by force.

“Today, it appears that Azerbaijan and Turkey are determined to make good on those threats, and our policy must adjust accordingly. I believe the United States should make clear to Azerbaijan and Turkey that if they persist in this violence instead of embracing a peaceful settlement of the conflict, we are prepared to recognize the Republic of Artsakh as an independent nation, and to work with the International Community to achieve the same.

“Presidents Aliyev and Erdogan must understand that they cannot resolve a decades long border dispute though the indiscriminate use of force against civilians, and the United States will not stand idly by as they attempt to do so. The only resolution of this dispute can be through negotiations, not raining artillery and bombs on Armenian civilians.”

 

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