Western Azerbaijan Community sends appeal to Pope Francis
The Western Azerbaijan Community sent an appeal to His Holiness Pope Francis asking his support in enabling the Azerbaijanis expelled from Armenia to visit their homes, graveyards and sacred places, the Community’s press service told News.Az.
The appeal states the following:
On behalf of the Western Azerbaijan Community, an organization dedicated to championing the rights of Azerbaijanis expelled from Armenia, we write to you with a heavy heart and a fervent plea for justice and reconciliation. The Western Azerbaijan Community was founded in 1989 to provide a unified voice for the Azerbaijani people who have suffered immense injustices at the hands of the Government of Armenia.
It is with great sorrow that we recount the painful history of our people. Armenia forcibly expelled all Azerbaijanis from their homes, desecrated and destroyed their religious and cultural sites. This act of inhumanity not only violates international law but also undermines the principles of peace, coexistence, and mutual respect.
Armenia's policy of creating a mono-ethnic space by expelling Azerbaijanis and other ethnicities from its territory stands in stark contrast to the rich history of ethnic and religious diversity in our region. This deliberate exclusion and denial of basic rights perpetuates our suffering and hinders prospects of lasting peace and reconciliation.
We turn to you as the tireless advocate for interfaith dialogue and reconciliation. Your esteemed position carries immense moral authority, and we humbly request your assistance in facilitating confidence-building measures that would enable Azerbaijanis to visit their homes, graveyards, and sacred places in Armenia. This simple act of allowing our people to reconnect with their heritage and pray at the sites that hold deep spiritual significance for them would be a powerful step towards healing and reconciliation.
The upcoming occasion of Eid al-Adha, a time of reflection, sacrifice, and reconciliation, presents an opportune moment to draw attention to the urgency of this matter and express support and solidarity with the Azerbaijani expellees from Armenia. Your acknowledging and advocating for the rights of Azerbaijanis to return to their homeland, and facilitating our access to our holy sites there would not only provide solace to the hearts of those who have endured immense suffering but also contribute to the promotion of peace and reconciliation in the region.
We are confident that your esteemed intervention will have a profound impact on the restoration of justice and the realization of human rights for Azerbaijanis expelled from Armenia. Your compassionate voice, resonating in defense of the oppressed, carries the sublime weight to influence positive change and foster a spirit of understanding and coexistence.
On behalf of Azerbaijanis who yearn to return to their homeland, we extend our deepest gratitude for your attention to this important matter.
May the message of peace and reconciliation prevail, guiding us towards a future where our people can live again in their homeland in safety and with dignity.”