The Armenian Council of America supports the courageous people of the Republic of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) who protest against the illegal Azeri blockade of the region that has lasted for more than 215 days. The Aliyev regime has tightened its inhumane hold on the region by closing off the Lachin Corridor, the only lifeline to the area, to humanitarian organizations including the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). This blockade by the Aliyev regime is in direct violation of the February 2023 ruling by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) which ordered Azerbaijan to ensure free movement along the corridor. It is imperative that the United States support the citizens of Artsakh, and demand Azerbaijan’s leadership to immediately cease its ongoing program of ethnic cleansing and its infringement of human rights in the region.

The Lachin Corridor, connecting Artsakh with Armenia, serves as a vital lifeline for the more than 120,000 indigenous Armenian residents of the region. It has been a critical artery for the movement of goods, services, and humanitarian aid. The blockade of this corridor not only poses severe challenges to the daily lives of the inhabitants but also restricts their access to essential resources, medical supplies, and life-saving medical services. The blockade has already contributed to the civilian deaths of Artsakh’s elderly and children. To date, more than 1,610 citizens have been deprived of necessary medical treatment due to the suspension of planned surgeries in all medical facilities in Artsakh.  Around 3,900 people include 550 children have been separated from their homes due to the blockade, around 11,000 people have lost their jobs and income due to the economic impacts of the blockade, and it is estimated that the Republic of Artsakh’s economy has lost more than $409 million marking a 45% decline in its annual GDP

As much as Azerbaijan would like to shroud their aggression under a pretext of local squabbles and politics, this is clearly a humanitarian crisis.

We demand the immediate removal of the blockade and the restoration of the Lachin Corridor as a functional route for the passage of goods, services, and humanitarian aid.

We stand in unwavering solidarity with the protest in Artsakh against the blockade of the Lachin Corridor, and call upon the United States government to effectuate its promises for peace in the region and an end to the suffering of the people of Artsakh at the hands of Azerbaijan.

– The Armenian Council of America Board of Directors.

 

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