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On this day, May 8th, let’s not forget Shusha

By Jean-François Mancel:-

If we commonly remember May 8th as the capitulation day of the Nazi Germany against Allies in 1945, May 8th 1992 is for our Azerbaijani friends the day of the fall of Shusha, taken by the Armenian army.

Shusha was the cradle of Azerbaijani music. The city witnessed the birth of Azerbaijani culture, of mugham, this chant which comes from the depth of the bodies and souls, carrying through time the emotions of the Azerbaijani people.

It’s in Shusha that Alexander Dumas met Khurshudbanu Natavan, daughter of the khan of Karabakh, one of the most famous lyric poetesses of the time.

Shusha was the beating heart of Azerbaijani culture until it was taken by the Armenian army on May 8th 1992.

The overthrow of the city resulted from the occupation of the region of Azerbaijan called Upper Karabakh by Armenian troops : 480 persons were murdered, 600 persons were injured, 552 children lost their parents. Schools, historical, cultural and religious monuments were destroyed, all the Azerbaijani cultural heritage that made Shusha in fluent disappeared.

Armenian troops went from house to house and exterminated without exception every family living in Shusha for generations, replacing them by Armenian occupants who claim today a dummy auto-determination. Shusha is henceforth the ghost of its past flourishing intellectual and artistic self.

While, in France, we are celebrating the 74th anniversary of the victory of liberty over oppression, let’s have a thought for our Azerbaijani friends and for Shusha who lost its freedom and independence 27 years ago.

But not forever.
We must constantly recall the resolutions of the United Nations acknowledging that Azerbaijan’s rights are still not carried out, that one million displaced people await to go back to their motherland and that France must contribute to it, playing fully its role for a fair and lasting peace.

Jean-François Mancel

President of the Association of Azerbaijan’s Friends (France)

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