November 5th, 2020
Urgent Call From HART’s Partner in Nagorno Karabakh: “Churches Have Turned a Deaf Ear to our Suffering”
Artemis is one of HART’s partners in Nagorno Karabakh. She told us in an urgent letter today that, “war crimes” are being committed by Azerbaijan and Turkey, “against civilians, women and children: kindergartens, school and hospitals, homes being shelled, bombed.” Her letter is published in full below:
Dear International Community, World Leaders, Powers, Governments, Head of Churches and finally Christians of our world. The war in Artsakh – our soldiers are getting wounded and our people are voiceless. It seems the war has also wounded all of you as, you have all become BLIND, DEAF AND DUMB. I do not know how any human being can be silent after seeing, hearing about war crimes being committed against civilians, women and children: kindergartens, school and hospitals, homes being shelled, bombed. The enemy is using the latest high tech mass destructive aerial weapons that the 21st century has come up with and also phosphorous, targeting civilian territories which is a war crime and can only be described as Genocide. This time the perpetrators are not just Turkey and Azerbaijan, but every single one of you who continue to be BLIND, DEAF AND DUMB to what is happening to the people of Artsakh.
Everyone, whether it be in Armenia or Artsakh, are trying to do something to be of help.
Mothers and wives are knitting socks, beanies and gloves for our young soldiers. Others are making our famous ‘Jingal ‘ bread at different locations, and the profits are going to the Artsakh fund. Others continue to deliver food and supplies to families. Others are sewing raincoats and sleeping bags for the soldiers. Others are even preparing camouflage net covers for vehicles in their yards.
I have also been doing all of this for my staff of 72, with their families numbering 400 persons who are spread out all over Armenia. Some families of 10 to 17 people are all huddled under one roof. And my husband is doing his bit in Artsakh.
Armond (Artemis’ husband), in 2016 was on the front line alongside our young soldiers. This time he was not able to go to the front line but at the same time he couldn’t not do anything. In an interview he was asked why he hasn’t left. He answered, “this is my home, how can anyone leave their home. Artsakh has become one home for all Armenians. The people have become our parents, brothers and sisters and the soldiers our sons. So in one word we are helping our family.”
I was not here in 1991 war, however the others say it is nothing like it was in those days. They would count the grads and after 40 they knew they had time to come out. But now, it is one after another. There are no numbers and no time and the damage is massive. Every sound of a bomb we feel on our skin. “Where did it hit? Who is hurt? Who has died?” We ask ourselves.
My friends and I are going to regions, villages and finding out if there are still people living there, what they need, food, first aid supplies, warm clothing etc. We try and do the same for our soldiers and find out where they are located in areas that are difficult to reach. Having collected all this information, I send the list to Artemis and friends who purchase everything from Yerevan. I must mention that the money is given to them from friends, relatives and kind people. They deliver it here, and our souvenir shop Nereni has now become a storage place. We box, label, send or deliver them. This is why I have not left Artakh as my family needs me.
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