Washington, DC – Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06), Congressman Gus Bilirakis (FL-12), Congressman Adam Schiff (CA-28), and Congresswoman Jackie Speier (CA-14) today called on the Trump Administration to play an active role in the equitable, long-term solution to the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan. In the letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, the Co-Chairs call on the Trump Administration to develop a comprehensive strategy that manages both the resulting humanitarian crisis and holds Azerbaijan and Turkey accountable for their role in the conflict.
“We write to express our deep concern about the humanitarian crisis that has unfolded in Nagorno Karabakh (Artsakh) since Azerbaijan and Turkey first initiated the conflict on September 27, 2020. While a trilateral ceasefire paused the fighting on November 10, we believe the United States must play an active role to help determine an equitable, long-term solution to this conflict,” the lawmakers wrote. “We strongly urge the Department of State to rapidly implement a comprehensive strategy that simultaneously addresses the humanitarian needs of Armenians displaced by the recent fighting and holds Azerbaijan and Turkey accountable for their actions that led to the needless death of thousands of Armenians.”
Specifically, the letter calls on the Trump Administration to:
- Reengage in the Organization for the Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group process.
- Help Artsakh rebuild their communities without fear of further bloodshed and recognize Artsakh’s right to self-determination.
- Use every available diplomatic tool to penalize Turkey for its aggression and abhorrent human rights abuses, including the imposition of sanctions or withholding aid to deter Azerbaijan from escalating threats of violence.
- Ensure that displaced Armenian civilians can return to their homes and provide significant humanitarian aid and assistance in clearing unexploded munitions.
- Strengthen the relationship between the United States and Armenia by improving ties to benefit Armenia’s young democracy and the large Armenian-American diaspora in the United States.
“We applaud the Armenian Caucus leadership for their repeated calls on the White House to immediately engage in the Nagorno Karabakh negotiations. Absent US leadership, with each passing day Putin, Erdogan, and Aliyev further implement their scheme against Armenian and American interests in the South Caucasus region. It’s vital to the longterm national security of both nation’s that America leads from the front on a just resolution of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict.” states Taniel Koushakjian, Armenian Council of America’s Washington D.C. Representative.
A copy of the letter is available here.