The opening ceremony of the commemorative plaque dedicated to the Khojaly genocide took place on the territory of the Dobrava Memorial Park complex in Maribor city dedicated to the memory of the victims of wars.
The erection of the memorial plaque in Maribor, which is of great importance in bringing the realities of the Khojaly genocide to the world community, became possible with the support of Azerbaijan’s Embassy in Austria, Slovakia and Slovenia.
This is a joint project of the Council on State Support to Non-Governmental Organizations under the auspices of the President of Azerbaijan, the Slovenian-Azerbaijani Friendship Association and the Association of Significant Cemeteries in Europe.
Alojz Kovsca, president of the upper chamber of the Slovenian Parliament (State Council), chairman of the Council on State Support to Non-Governmental Organizations under the auspices of the President of Azerbaijan, vice-president of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, MP Azay Guliyev, Azerbaijan’s Ambassador to Austria, Slovenia and Slovakia Galib Israfilov, Azerbaijan’s Ambassador to Croatia Fakhraddin Gurbanov took part in the ceremony held as part of the Week of Discovering European cemeteries (WDEC).
Besides, Member of the Board of the Azerbaijani Community of the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan Republic, Professor Farhad Badalbayli, Maribor Mayor Andrej Fistravec, representatives of the diplomatic corps, members of the local community and representatives of the press took part in the ceremony.
Director of the Dobrava Memorial Park, President of the Association of Significant Cemeteries in Europe Lidija Plibersek, Alojz Kovsca, president of the upper chamber of the Slovenian Parliament, Ambassador Galib Israfilov and MP Azay Guliyev addressed the opening ceremony.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
On Feb. 25-26, 1992, the Armenian armed forces, together with the 366th infantry regiment of Soviet troops, stationed in Khankendi, committed an act of genocide against the population of the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly. As many as 613 people, including 63 children, 106 women and 70 old people were killed in the massacre. Eight families were totally exterminated, 130 children lost one parent and 25 children lost both. Some 1,275 innocent residents were taken hostage, while the fate of 150 people still remains unknown.
The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.