On February 12, 2014, the Hawaii House of Representatives Committee on Veterans, Military, and International Affairs, and Culture and the Arts rejected wo anti-Armenian resolutions during their committee hearing at the State Capitol, despite the efforts of Committee Chairman Mark Takei, who was an author of the bills. Both measures were reportedly introduced at the behest of the Azerbaijani government, confirmed publicly by State Rep. Rida Cabanilla, who was quoted in "Civil Beat," a Hawaii publication, as saying that: "The resolutions came from Elin Suleymanov, Azerbaijan’s ambassador to the United States."
"Civil Beat" further reported that last May Cabanilla and Takai joined more than 300 other people from the U.S. at the U.S.-Azerbaijan Convention, courtesy of the Republic of Azerbaijan which spent nearly $8,000 for the two legislators’ visit. When he was questioned about the trip last summer, Takei said, "There’s nothing in the Legislature now that would directly benefit Azerbaijan, so it passes the ethics concern."
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Today, February 25, it was the turn of South Dakota. After a long discussion at the House of Representatives' Republican Caucus on Monday morning, the sponsor of a pro-Azerbaijani resolution on the issue of Khojaly, Rep. Lance Russell, agreed to defer and ultimately withdrew the measure.
"It’s unfortunate this resolution made it this far in our process but the positive side of that is there are now 105 legislators in South Dakota who got a real earful on the plight of persecuted Armenian Christians," explained Rep. Steve Hickey (R-09), Pastor of the Church at the Gate in Sioux Falls, who was among the vocal opponents to the resolution.
* * *According to a dispatch of AzerNews of February 24, however, Honduras has officially joined the countries which recognize the "ocupation of Azerbaijani lands and Khojaly genocide." Its National Congress has signed a document in that regard. It was reportedly published in the official gazette on February 13.
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The Political Science Association of Armenia held a seminar on the issue of Khojaly on February 22. The report says:
"On February 26, 1992, the Aghdam events took place, which are presented by the Azerbaijani side as the ‘Khojaly massacre,’ during which a group of inhabitants of Khojaly was shot down in cold-blood by Azerbaijani paramilitary forces in the territories under their control.
"Aiming to overthrow President Mutalibov, the oppositional Popular Front of Azerbaijan used its Karabagh troops to suppress Azerbaijani forces stationed in Khojaly who were regularly shelling the Armenian-populated capital of Stepanakert and surrounding villages. President Mutalibov personally attested to this in his interview with Russia’s Nezavisimaya Gazeta in 1992.
"Prior to the operation, the Armenian Karabagh side, abiding by international humanitarian norms and law, informed Khojaly authorities of the planned offensive operation and of a safe corridor left for the evacuation of the Azerbaijani population.
"Right after the tragic events in the Azerbaijani-controlled territories, Azerbaijani journalist Chingiz Mustafayev photographed and video-recorded corpses in the village, which were not mutilated. Meanwhile, in photos taken by the same photographer two days later, the bodies were grossly mutilated ‒ to demonstrate the 'cruelty and inhumanity' of Armenians. The existing irrefutable facts prove that the Armenian Karabagh side did not have physical access to those territories where the villagers were killed. It is also problematic that Mustafayev, having witnessed the horrific crime, died a few months later in circumstances not yet clear.
"After the takeover of power in Baku in 1992, following the Aghdam provocation, the new leadership of Azerbaijan, with Abulfaz Elchibey at the helm, tried hard to hush up the heinous crime committed by them against the citizens of Khojaly, and initiated a targeted falsification of events presenting its own provocation as a “massacre” of the civilian population organized by Armenian Karabakh forces. Official Baku continues this policy to this day.
"By means of vicious propaganda, Azerbaijani authorities try to harm the international reputation of the two Armenian states, as well as to impose a distorted view of events on younger generations, thereby instigating Armenophobia and xenophobia.
"Considering the fact that Turkey and Azerbaijan have decided to act in tandem to propagate a myth about the ‘Khojaly massacre’ in the run-up to the 100th anniversary of the Armenian genocide, the Political Science Association of Armenia calls on the international community to prevent Baku and Ankara from distorting historical truth for political gain.
"The Political Science Association of Armenia also appeals to honest Azerbaijanis to impartially assess historical facts and not to fall for the Aliyev regime’s xenophobic policies."
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The so-called "Azerbaijan-America Alliance" has launched its annual festival of deceit about the massacre of Khojaly. On the morning of February 25, they were helping fill the coffers of CBS by splashing their venom on its billboard of 42nd Street and 8th Avenue. May the souls of those civilians who were betrayed by their own 22 years ago rest in peace, even though they are still being exploited for the sake of hate and lies, or blood and oil.