The Presidium of the Organization of War Veterans, Labor and Armed Forces of the Republic of Azerbaijan has sent an appeal to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov, AzVision.az reports.
The appeal reads as follows:
"Dear Sergei Viktorovich,
On the eve of the 76th anniversary of the historic victory over fascism, we, the veterans of the Second World War, addressed you and expressed our concern over the attempts of Hitler's Nazism to describe the Armenian puppets as heroes. That address was about the shameless glorification of Nazi criminals both in Armenia and in Russia's information and cultural space, which acknowledges the memory of millions of people killed by the Nazis.
With pain in our hearts, we brought to your attention that Armenia is using Russian resources to justify the leaders of the punitive Armenian SS Legion Drastamat Kanayan and Garegin Ter-Harutyunyan, also known as Generals Dro and Nzhdeh. In the media, Nzhdeh, who was an accomplice of the Nazi regime and a friend of Hitler and Himmler, is equated with heroes,” the appeal noted.
Moreover, a presentation of ‘Conversations with Garegin Nzhdeh, or Monument to 125th Anniversary of Nzhdeh’ book was held in Moscow. The paradox is that, according to the event organizers, ‘Nzhdeh's ideas are more relevant today than ever and should be actively promoted in modern society’. In 1948 Nzhdeh was sentenced to 25 years in prison as a war criminal and died in 1957 in the Vladimir Central Prison. He wasn’t acquitted, since the court upheld the previous sentence,” reminded the appeal.
Nevertheless, the Armenian Diaspora of Russia annually organizes visits to the grave of Nzhdeh at the Prince Vladimir cemetery in Vladimir city to honor the memory of this fascist executioner. The question is also raised about the construction of a memorial complex at the cemetery to this Nazi accomplice,” the appeal further said.
We express our deep gratitude to you for not ignoring our last year's appeal. As you can see from the answer we received, a certain amount of work was done with representatives of local Armenians. Apparently, as a result of this work, an attempt to perpetuate the memory of this Nazi killer in Russia was prevented last year,” the appeal authors noted.
Contrary to this, two weeks after the celebration in Armenia of the 71st anniversary of the Victory over Nazi Germany, a solemn ceremony of unveiling a monument to Garegin Nzhdeh took place in the center of Yerevan. The ceremony of perpetuating the memory of the fascist murderer was personally attended by the President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan, who stood next to you a year ago at the parade timed to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the Victory over fascism in Moscow,” added the authors.
You have repeatedly stressed the inadmissibility of rewriting and distorting the results of the Great Patriotic War. It was on the initiative of the Russian Federation that the UN General Assembly adopted the ‘Fight against the glorification of Nazism and other practices that contribute to the escalation of modern forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance’ resolution No. 70/139,” the appeal read.
Paragraph 4 of this document states that the UN General Assembly "expresses deep concern about the glorification in any form of the Nazi movement, neo-Nazism and former members of the Waffen SS, including the construction of monuments and memorials and public demonstrations in order to glorify the Nazi past, the Nazi movement and neo-Nazism, as well as through the announcement or attempts to declare the members of this organization and those who fought against the anti-Hitler coalition, collaborated with the Nazi movement and committed war crimes and crimes against humanity, participants in national liberation movements,” pointed out the appeal.
Cult of worshipping persons loyal to the fascist regime who became the perpetrators of the massacres of Soviet soldiers and civilians, including representatives of the Armenian people themselves, is widespread in Armenia, which joined this resolution and posing as a strategic ally of Russia,” the appeal also noted.
We are surprised that Russia itself, which has always reacted to similar incidents in other countries, doesn’t react to this in any way, and we don’t understand why Armenia, where commemorative coins are minted and films are made in honour of the Nazi criminals Dro and Nzhdeh, is given special privileges for such behaviour,” the authors said. “In Yerevan, a square and a metro station are named after Garegin Nzhdeh, and there is also a street named after Drastamat Kananyan. Now, along with the complex of government buildings and the headquarters of the ruling party of Armenia, there is also a monument to Nzhdeh.”
We would also like to inform you that another monument to the Nazi Nzhdeh is located in the city of Khojavand, which was once occupied by Armenia, and now is in the zone of responsibility of the Russian peacekeepers, and it’s extremely important to demolish this monument,” the authors further noted. “The presence of such a monument on the territory of Azerbaijan is unacceptable and unacceptable not only from the point of view of the values of our state and people but also taking into account universal and moral values.”
The bright memory of the courage of the Soviet people is still revered in Azerbaijan, and May 9 remains one of the most revered public holidays. We, people who have gone through all the hardships of the war against fascism, who have lost comrades in these battles, are watching with pain in our hearts the glorification of Nazi criminals,” the authors also pointed out. “We are outraged by the actions of Armenia, which are a direct manifestation of disrespect for the memory of those who died for our once common Motherland, for all peace-loving humanity.
We are convinced that we must unite our efforts in the fight against the common evil in the form of the ideology of fascism promoted by Armenia, remaining faithful to the blessed memory of the victims of the Great Patriotic War. On behalf of all veterans of the Great Patriotic War of Azerbaijan, with respect and hope that we will be understood correctly".