Lebanese-Armenian Confirmed Captive After Disappearance
01/14/2021 Nagorno-Karabakh (International Christian Concern) – One of the two Lebanese-Armenian citizens, originally reported missing on November 10, is confirmed being held in Azeri captivity. Maral Najarian left Beirut following the blast in August 2020, seeking refuge in the Nagorno-Karabakh (Armenia: Artsakh) region. Instead, she found herself stuck in the middle of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and suddenly disappeared while settling in the region.
When the war broke out, Najarian moved locations to better protect herself. Following the ceasefire, she attempted to move her belongings from her original relocation back to Shushi. Her and her acquaintance, Viken, disappeared en route. The European Court of Human Rights reportedly relayed the update on Najarian to an Armenian parliament member. There is no update currently on the second missing person.
Azerbaijan’s President, Ilham Aliyev, previously stated that any Armenians captured by Azeri troops were considered “terrorist” to be prosecuted and not prisoners of war.
The report entitled Turkey: Challenges Facing Christians 2016-2020 adds, “Turkey’s recent military activities in the surrounding region have impacted the security of its Christian communities through tensions arising from nationalistic rhetoric and provocative actions… The state aims to control the history and cultural heritage of religious minorities, leading to exploitation of assets or their eventual destruction.”
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