Los Angeles City Council reaffirms support for Artsakh, suspends L.A.-Shushi Friendship City agreement

Asbarez – The Los Angeles City Council unanimously voted to reaffirm the city’s support for the people of Artsakh and temporarily suspend the LA-Shushi Friendship City agreement, “for as long as it is illegally controlled by Azerbaijan.”

The resolution was introduced by Councilmember Paul Krekorian and seconded by Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, before the City Council voted to unanimously adopted a resolution reaffirming the support of the City of Los Angeles towards the people of the Republic of Artsakh.

“The historic struggle of the people of Artsakh, including the 1991-94 war, is similar to the struggle of all peoples who created a democratic state/nation, that adhere to the values of liberty and self-determination through free and fair elections, including the United States of America,” said the resolution.

The resolution referenced the City Council’s 2013 recognition of Artsakh as an independence and sovereign state, as well as a December 2020 decision to support “the struggle of the Republic of Artsakh and its people for self-determination, and called upon the United States federal government to do likewise.”

In addressing last fall’s Artsakh War, the L.A. City Council resolution stressed that “throughout the brutal invasion, Azerbaijan terrorized civilians by targeting them with munitions that are widely banned and condemned by the international community, including cluster bombs and white phosphorus.” The resolution further states that “major combat operations ended on November 9, 2020, although Azerbaijan’s forces have continued to engage in violence, aggression and cruelty even after that date.”

“Therefore, be it resolved that by the adoption of this resolution the City of Los Angeles honors and mourns the thousands of lives lost in this attack, and declares November 9, 2020 a day of remembrance and commemoration of the victims of Azerbaijan’s aggression against the Republic of Artsakh,” the city council affirmed.

The city council also voted to “temporarily suspend its ‘Friendship City’ relationship with Shushi for as long as it is illegally controlled by Azerbaijan, and will renew that status when Shushi is again free of Azeri conquest and oppression and restored to democratic governance as part of the Republic of Artsakh.”

“Having been abandoned by the international community, and facing an existential threat to Artsakh and the very real potential for another genocide of the Armenian people, Armenia signed a cease-fire statement brokered by Russia that allows Azerbaijan to control much of Artsakh, specifically including the city of Shushi,” said the resolution, which also recalled the city council’s April 24, 2012 decision to adopt Shushi as a “Friendship City.”

“The City Council of Los Angeles extends its warm greetings, support and best wishes for safety and security to Shushi’s Mayor Artsvik Sargsyan and the entire democratically elected leadership of Shushi, and the City Council further looks forward to the day that Shushi is once again liberated from Azeri occupation,” said the LA City Council.

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