Armenia is the oldest Christian nation in the world, but has suffered devastating violence at the hands of Turkey and other neighboring Muslim nations for over a century. In 1915, Turkey (the Ottoman Empire) slaughtered over one million Armenian Christians in what is now known as the Armenian genocide.
Unfortunately, the hatred that led to the 1915 massacre lives on in the 21st century. Azerbaijan, a Muslim-majority country, is holding a large number of Armenian Christian soldiers in captivity with the help of Turkey after the recent war over Nagorno-Karabakh (Armenian: Artsakh). Although the people of Nagorno-Karabakh are roughly 90% Armenian Christians, Azerbaijan has long claimed that the region is Azeri territory. Last September, Azerbaijan, aided by the Turkish military, invaded Nagorno-Karabakh and took it from Armenian hands.
It is currently unknown how many young Armenian men are suffering in Azerbaijan’s Prisoner of War (POW) camps, but there is mounting evidence that these Armenian POWs are being abused while in captivity, in direct violation of international law.
Videos have surfaced showing Azeri soldiers beating and humiliating defenseless Armenian POWs. Azerbaijan refuses to disclose the identities of the prisoners, as well as the exact number of POWs it still holds. Dozens of Armenians still do not know the whereabouts of their family members who went off to fight in the war.
We are calling on the European Court of Human Rights to investigate these cases, bringing the Azeri soldiers who have abused prisoners to justice, and demand that the Azeri government disclose the identities of its Armenian POWs. These Armenian Christians are being specifically abused for their religion by the Azeri troops, in violation of Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights, protecting freedom of religion.
Help rescue these Armenians. Sign this petition to call on the European Court of Human Rights to investigate Azerbaijan’s treatment of its POWs and release their identities.