WASHINGTON, DC – Congressional Armenian Caucus Founding Co-Chair Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and a bipartisan group of 30 U.S. House members are spearheading legislation calling for international recognition of Republic of Artsakh as the foundation for a lasting peace in the Caucasus region, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA). The resolution – which enjoys strong support from the ANCA — also condemns Azerbaijan and Turkey’s ongoing attacks on Armenia and the Republic of Artsakh, urges the zeroing out of military aid to Azerbaijan, calls for Artsakh’s direct participation in ongoing OSCE mediated peace talks, and, more broadly, urges the easing of travel and communication restrictions between the U.S. and the Artsakh Republic.
Set to be introduced on Friday, October 23rd, the measure coincides with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s meetings with the Foreign Ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan, taking place with the backdrop of Azerbaijan and Turkey’s unrelenting bombing of Armenian civilians in Artsakh, formerly known as Nagorno-Karabakh.
“It is incredibly important for the House of Representatives to send a strong message of support for Artsakh and its people’s bid for independence, especially on the eve of important meetings between the Armenian and Azerbaijani foreign ministers and Secretary of State Pompeo,” said Rep. Pallone. “The international community has folded to Azerbaijani and Turkish pressure for too long, ignoring their constant bombastic rhetoric and their blatant military buildup over the years. As this bloody conflict continues, we believe now is the time to finally acknowledge Artsakh’s legitimate claims to independence on the world stage and grant formal recognition of their people’s right to self-determination.”
Rep. Pallone continued, stating, “This resolution reflects the ongoing situation in the South Caucuses and takes a significant step in demonstrating Congressional support for the people of Artsakh during this difficult time. The United States must remain committed to immediately halting the ongoing fighting in Artsakh. In the process, we must also take bold steps toward holding Azerbaijan and Turkey accountable for their aggressions and toward producing a permanent solution that resolves Artsakh’s status and security issues. The introduction of this resolution helps us along that path.”
ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian welcomed the introduction of this powerful, pro-Artsakh measure. “Congressman Pallone’s resolution rightfully affirms what all of Washington already knows – that the only peaceful, long-lasting resolution to this conflict will come from international recognition of the Republic of Artsakh. It’s time to stop outsourcing U.S. policy to Ankara and Baku. It’s time to take an American stand for liberty. It’s time for America to recognize the Artsakh Republic,” stated Hamparian.
Joining Rep. Pallone as original cosponsors of the resolution are Armenian Caucus Co-Chairs Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Jackie Speier (D-CA), and Adam Schiff (D-CA) as well as, Representatives: Julia Brownley (D-CA), Tony Cárdenas (D-CA), David N. Cicilline (D-RI), Katherine Clark (D-MA), Jim Costa (D-CA), TJ Cox (D-CA), Danny K. Davis (D-IL), Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Adriano Espaillat (D-NY), Ro Khanna (D-CA), Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL), Brenda Lawrence (D-MI), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), James McGovern (D-MA), Grace Meng (D-NY), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Grace Napolitano (D-CA), Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ), Linda T. Sánchez (D-CA), John Sarbanes (D-MD), Brad Sherman (D-CA), Albio Sires (D-NJ), Thomas Suozzi (D-NY), and Dina Titus (D-NV).