Utah Armenian community urges U.S. action to halt Azerbaijan attacks against Nagorno-Karabakh

Dozens of allies and members of Utah’s Armenian community gathered near the University of Utah campus ahead of Wednesday evening’s vice presidential debate with a passionate message, ABC4 News reports.

With signs and flags, they pleaded with national and state’s leaders to intervene and help diffuse the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan in the mountainous region of Nagorno-Karabakh.

“The purpose of our gathering is not to protest, nor is it a rally. It is not political. It’s apolitical. It’s humanistic,” said Narine Sarkissian, the Utah Chair of the Armenian Assembly of America. “We are calling on our congressional and state representatives to sign House Resolution 1165. Stop the aid to Turkey and Azerbaijan. That aid is being used to kill people.”

H.R. 1165 is a bipartisan resolution sponsored by California Rep. Jackie Speier that “condemns Azerbaijan’s coordinated offensive in Nagorno-Karabakh and denounces Turkish interference in the conflict.”

Over the weekend, thousands of protestors came together, gathering outside the buildings of news outlets in Hollywood, including CNN and KTLA, in an emotional call for media coverage and recognition of the escalating violence in the region. Demonstrators carrying Armenian flags walked onto freeways, blocking traffic as a form of protest and a plea for a stop to bloodshed in the region.

“Americans should never tolerate the use of cluster bombs against civilian targets and other war crimes that carry with them the echoes of the Armenian Genocide,” L.A. City Councilman Paul Krekorian said Monday. “Americans should never tolerate fascist Turkish expansionism in this part of the world.”

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