PRESS RELEASE
July 23,2009
Contact: Michael A. Zachariades
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (202) 393-3434

MEMBERS OF CONGRESS DENOUNCE AZERBAIJAN'S WAR RHETORIC

Washington, DC - In support of the right for the citizens of Nagorno
Karabakh to decide their own future, U.S. Reps. Frank Pallone,
Jr. (D-NJ), Mark Steven Kirk (R-IL), Adam Schiff (D-CA), and George
Radanovich (R-CA) issued a statement today regarding the Nagorno
Karabakh peace process and concerns over Azerbaijan's combative
rhetoric, reported the Armenian Assembly of America (Assembly).

The statement read:

As members of the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues, we
appreciate the continued efforts of the Co-Chairs of the Minsk Group
to work towards a just and peaceful solution to the Nagorno Karabakh
conflict. Unfortunately, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev's
bellicose statements undermine this process.

Congress has consistently called for U.S. assistance to promote
confidence-building measures among those involved in the Nagorno
Karabakh conflict. We commend the governments of Armenia and Nagorno
Karabakh for their willingness in this regard. However, Azerbaijan has
repeatedly rejected these measures and instead continues its war
mongering against Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh. Coupled with
Azerbaijan's escalating military expenditures, this represents a
deeply disturbing trend that serves no constructive purpose.

As recently as July 14, 2009, President Aliyev threatened that he
could not rule out a military solution to the conflict. This statement
came just days after President Obama, French President Sarkozy and
Russian President Medvedev announced renewed efforts to find a
solution to the conflict through nonviolent means and only four days
before Aliyev met with Armenia and Russian presidents.

We stand in strong support of the people of Nagorno Karabakh's right
to decide their own future. The citizens of Nagorno Karabakh have
remained committed to respecting human rights and democracy and have
made significant progress toward peace and prosperity. The safety and
security of the people is essential. No solution is possible without
Nagorno Karabakh's consent.

"Our position on this issue is clear," said Assembly Executive
Director Bryan Ardouny. "Any resolution must be acceptable to the
people of both Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh," adding that "we
appreciate the efforts of the Armenian Caucus."

The Assembly's most recent statement regarding the Nagorno Karabakh
peace process is available here in its entirety.

Established in 1972, the Armenian Assembly of America is the largest
Washington-based nationwide organization promoting public
understanding and awareness of Armenian issues. The Assembly is a
501(c) (3) tax-exempt membership organization.

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