WASHINGTON, DC – Thousands of activists have already taken action on the Armenian National Committee of America’s (ANCA) call for the Pentagon agency responsible for arms sales – the Defense Security Cooperation Agency – to deny U.S. approval for any Erdogan or Aliyev government requests to purchase U.S. military or dual-use equipment or technology to either Turkey or Azerbaijan. They have – in emails and calls to the Agency’s director, Heidi Grant, requested a special public session devoted to past, pending, or planned U.S. arms sales to Ankara or Baku.
The request comes amid growing concerns that U.S. or NATO military items and technology are being utilized by Turkey and Azerbaijan in the brutal bombing of civilians in Armenia and Artsakh – an attack now entering its fourth week, at the cost over 700 Armenian lives. There are also credible reports that Turkey is currently seeking expedited approval for U.S. drone sensors, in the wake of Canada’s recent suspension of arms sales to Ankara.
ANCA Executive Director launched the grassroots action component of the campaign in a Facebook Live video Sunday evening, explaining, “It is a horror what Azerbaijan is doing to civilians in Artsakh. It is a disgrace that a NATO ally is so directly involved in the mass murder of Armenians. And, it is even more abhorrent for Americans to be implicated in that.”
“The Defense Security Cooperation Agency should categorically and unequivocally reject any and all requests for approval of new, current, or pending exports, sales, deliveries, or third-party transfers of U.S. military or dual-use equipment, parts, or technology to either Turkey or Azerbaijan. This prohibition should include any and all drone-related equipment, including sensor, thermal imaging, and laser designation systems, and extend until at the very least 60 days after Azerbaijan and its Turkish/ISIS allies have ceased any and all offensive uses of force against Armenian civilians in Armenia and Artsakh,” states the grassroots letter to the DSCA.
The ANCA has also written to the State Department official responsible for the U.S. diplomatic sign-off on foreign arms sales.
The anca.org/exportcontrol action portal includes a simple two-step process to send a letter to the DSCA and seamlessly connect by phone through the ANCA’s March to Justice “Click to call” feature. It is the latest in a series of ANCA action items calling on the U.S. government to take concrete steps to condemn Azerbaijan and Turkey for their escalating attacks on Armenia and Artsakh and sanction the Aliyev and Erdogan regimes for war crimes committed through the use of illegal cluster bombs against Armenian civilians.