Holding Women in Black Armenia in our hearts 1

Women in Black around the world are holding Women in Black in Armenia in our hearts as we grow increasingly worried about them in the context of the armed conflict which has broken out between Armenia and its neighbour Azerbajan.

WiB Armenia are one of the newest and youngest group of our worldwide network, and had it not been for the pandemic, had planned to host WiB’s 2020 internaitonal gathering in the capital, Yerevan.

Women in Black oppose all war and all forms of violence. We do not take sides, and in supporting our sisters in Armenia are aware than there will be women working for peace in Azerbajan.

Below you will find some initial information about the war, and some background information about this “frozen” conflict. We will add to this information as the situation develops. Meanwhile, please call on your government, wherever you are, to urge both sides and their allies to call a ceasefire and work towards a peaceful solution.

Women and childen sheltering in cellars, Stepanakert

News from Armenia

On 27 September, Azerbaijan launched a large-scale attack along the entire line of contact of Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh) using heavy artillery, tanks, aircraft and missiles. Towns and villages in Artsakh are being bombed, including Stepanakert, the capital city, as well as the Armenian border near the town of Vardenis.This attack is targeting the civilian population in gross violation of international humanitarian law and with absolute disregard for the call by the UN Secretary General for a worldwide ceasefire during the COVID-19 pandemic.

As of 28 September, over 200 people have been wounded and over 60 people killed. They include both military personnel and civilians in Artsakh , including at least one child.  Armenia’s Health Minister announced that all elective medical care is suspended to enable care for wounded military and civilians.

This attack is unprecedented, and there is clear evidence that it was prepared in advance, with the apparent support of the Turkish government.

We believe that if the international community does not react in a timely and appropriate manner, military operations may expand beyond the conflict zone, resulting in serious atrocities and a humanitarian crisis in the region, exacerbated by the situation related to the Coronavirus outbreak.

For more recent updates, please go to armenia.womeninblack.org

Background information

Guardian: Why are Armenia and Azerbaijan fighting and what are the implications? https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/sep/28/why-are-armenia-and-azerbaijan-fighting-what-are-implications


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