By Tiffany Chan

BOSTON (CBS) – The Armenian community showed up by the hundreds in Boston on Sunday, marching in solidarity to call for peace amid ongoing tensions between Armenia and Azerbaijan.

“We just want the world to wake up and help us,” said one demonstrator.

The two nations are clashing over ownership of land internationally recognized as Azerbaijan but populated by ethnic Armenians.

The violence has killed more than 300 people.

“When we’re unified, nothing can stop us. You can see there is no fear here,” Mihran Deirmendjian told WBZ-TV.

Those in the crowd in Boston say they’re angered by Turkey’s involvement.

“The weapons that are being sold, the aid that’s being provided to these countries are being used to attack innocent Armenians and to bring ISIS into a region that was not there previously,” said protest organizer George Barmakian.

The protesters took to the streets of Boston, briefly shutting down traffic downtown before ending up at the Armenian Heritage Park.

Armenians from the Greater Boston area protesting on Sunday. (WBZ-TV)

Some protestors said they aren’t only marching for rights to the region of Nagorno-Karabakh, but also marching for their own survival.

“I don’t care whose land it is. I care about the soldiers. I care about my country, my people,” one demonstrator said. “They’re bombing the cities. They’re bombing the churches.”

The march and demonstration were peaceful and struck a unifying tone. Organizers say they’ll continue to show up – if only to spread awareness.

“I’m inspired by this, I’m motivated by this, and I want the rest of the world to see this. To see that we’re fighting for our people, fighting for our very existence,” said Barmakian.

Tiffany Chan

Comments
  1. Hovsep Dagdigian says:

    I read your report on the Armenian community’s protests against Azerbaijan, but the report gave little background on the origin of the conflict. Thus it did not provide an adequate understanding of this conflict.

    The conflict is not simply over territory; it is over the rights of the inhabitants of Nagorno Karabagh (which was and still is over 90% Armenian) to determine their fate and form of theirgovernment. This territory was gifted to Azerbaijan by Joseph Stalin shortly after the formation of the USSR, despite the territory’s huge Armenian majority, to cement friendship with Mustafa Kemal’s Turkey. Both Ottoman Turkey and the Azerbaijani Turks (and Mustufa Kemal – leader of the new Turkish Republic) were responsible for the Armenian Genocide (1915 – 1923).

    Within the Karabagh region of Azerbaijan Armenians were subjected to periodic killings, religious persecution and assaults on Armenian language and culture. Protests of Karabagh’s Armenians for separation from Azerbaijan were met by massacres of Armenians in Azerbaijan’s cities and Karabagh. Armenians defended themselves and established a democratic, though unrecognized, republic. Azerbaijan remains a tyrannical dictatorship under the Aliyev father and son dynasty. The conflict is about wether Karabagh’s population can assert their right to self-determination or wether they must subject themselves to ethnic cleansing under the Azerbaijan regime. Azerbaijan freely states they wish the Armenians out of Karabagh and Armenia proper.

    Another genocide?

    Hovsep Dagdigian
    USA

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