The series of events within the framework of the Justice for Khojaly awareness campaign took place in Belgium and Luxembourg
Representatives of diplomatic corps accredited in Belgium, representatives of civil society and other participants on 19.02.2015 attended an outstanding concert at the Bozar art center situated in the heart of Europe – Brussels – to commemorate the victims of the Khojaly Massacre.
Marc Verwilghen, Director, TEAS Brussels, said in his speech that the event is part of the the Justice for Khojaly awareness campaign initiated on 8 May 2008 by Mrs Leyla Aliyeva, Vice-President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation. The event, which was held successfully, manifests international support to the restoration of justice in the region. This support has previously been witnessed with the events held in hundreds of countries across Europe, America, Asia and Africa.
Verwilghen touched upon the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, underlining that Azerbaijani refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) – with no voice – are unable to return to their homes and lands because of the illegal occupation of the Azerbaijani territory of Nagorno-Karabakh and seven surrounding regions by Armenia’s armed forces. Despite four UN Security Council Resolutions and 21 years of OSCE Minsk Group negotiations, there is still no progress.
In his opening speech, Sven Gatz, Flemish Minister of Culture said the Justice for Khojaly commemoration concert at Bozar helps Europeans remember the terrible events in Nagorno-Karabakh, especially in Khojaly.
H.E. Fuad Isgandarov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the Kingdom of Belgium, Ambassador of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the European Union recalled that the Khojaly Massacre was a terrible atrocity that occurred in February 1992: “The same happened later in the Balkans and in Srebrenica. Azerbaijan is a unique, modern, secular, and developed country. Despite the ongoing Armenian–Azerbaijani conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, Azerbaijan has managed to retain its stability, develop, and become an important regional leader. Unfortunately, nearly 20 per cent of our territory remains occupied by Armenian armed forces, and numerous violations and actions are undertaken against our country on a regular basis. Even in this extremely difficult context, we believe in a peaceful resolution of this conflict, and hope that the European and international community will help resolve this. Tonight, we remember Nagorno-Karabakh in the hearts and minds of the Azerbaijani people, and particularly remember the souls of those who died in Khojaly.”
The programme of the concert also included the Belgian premiere of the Khojaly 613 tone poem, by French composer Pierre Thilloy. The musicians Sabina Rakcheyeva (violin), Annelise Clément (clarinet) and the Magma String Quartet performed during this exceptional and emotionally-charged evening.
Earlier on 16.02.2015 a documentary - “Endless Corridor” was projected and a book published by TEAS called “Khojaly Witness of a war crime: Armenia in the dock” was presented in Luxembourg.
On 21.02.2015, the memory of Khojaly victims was commemorated in a conference organized by the Turkish diaspora organizations in Ghent, with the participation of the members of Turkish and Azerbaijani Diasporas.
On 25.02.2015 world premiere of “In memory of Khojaly victims” by French composer Romain Zante took place at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels. Concert was attended by more than 600 people, including diplomatic corps accredited in Belgium.
On 26.02.2015, the memory of Khojaly victims was commemorated at the Jewish Museum of Brussels. The commemoration event was attended by the members of Azerbaijani Diasporas living in Brussels and representatives of Jewish community of Brussels.