Staunton, March 15 – The Civic Platform for Peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan, a group consisting of Qarabagh Armenians who are descendants of Christian Turks has protested the desecration of monuments to the Qarabagh khans and their descendants during the Armenian occupation.
That group, headed by Artur Agadzhanov, is especially outraged by the desecration of a monument to Hurshidbanu Natawan, the daughter of the last Qarabagh khan and a prominent poetess and humanitarian who paid for the viaduct that still brings water to Agdam (media.az/politics/1067813259/hristiane-karabaha-osuzhdayut-oskvernenie-armyanskimi-nacionalistami-mogily-poetessy-natavan/).
The group stressed that “Qarabagh Christians always had a direct and familial relationship to the Qarabagh rulers and Muslims as a whole.” Consequently, it said its members could not understand how anyone could deface her monument. “We doubt that those who did so have even a drop of Qarabagh blood in their veins.”
“Natawan was involved with charitable activity, brought water to Shusha and this water Armenians drank. How could anyone be so ungrateful?” Everyone in Qarabagh should remember and respect what she did “not only for Muslims but for Armenians” as “this is our shared Qarabagh history,” members of the group say.
The Civic Platform for Peace Between Armenia and Azerbaijan was established in October 2017 with an eye to ending the Armenian occupation of Azerbaijani territory, the return of all forced to leave their homes earlier, and the provision of special status for Qarabagh within Azerbaijan (kavkaz-uzel.eu/articles/317673/).
The members of the group are committed to ensuring that all who live in Qarabagh know the truth about the region, a place where for many decades Armenians and Azerbaijanis lived in peace. “People have died from false histories” which suggest otherwise, Agadzhanov says. And it is important that “false histories” be unmasked and corrected.
They have focused on Natawan (1832-1897) because she played the role she did and because she has long been a symbol of modernism and international cooperation among the peoples of the southern Caucasus. Indeed, in the last decade of the Soviet Union, some Azerbaijanis formed a Natawan Club to promote precisely those values.