Madam Speaker, I rise today to commemorate the 33rd anniversary of the massacre of the Armenian community in Sumgait, Azerbaijan. In 1988, when Armenians demanded their right to self-determination, Azerbaijani nationalists subjected the Armenian community living across Azerbaijan to a bloody campaign of massacre and deportation. Over 200 Armenian men, women and children lost their lives to a state-sponsored campaign of hatred against Armenians, a policy that continues in Azerbaijan to this day.
On September 27 last year, history repeated itself as the Azerbaijanis unleashed a full-scale war against Armenia and Artsakh. Thousands of Armenians are still refugees while Armenian POWs still remain under Azerbaijani custody. We must all learn from history and commit to standing up for justice and human rights all around the world.