A document proving the historical crimes committed by the Armenians against Azerbaijanis has been found in the archives of the French Foreign Ministry, according to a message posted on the Facebook page of the Consulate General of Azerbaijan in Los Angeles.
The consulate general said that this document shows evidence of the genocide committed by Armenians against Azerbaijanis. The document was sent to the French Foreign Ministry by the then French High Commissioner (ambassador) for Caucasus, Damien de Martel, who was in Tbilisi. Currently this document is being kept in the archives of the French Foreign Ministry.
The consulate emphasized that in this report, the High Commissioner described how in the present-day Armenia, in the vicinity of Armenia's capital city of Yerevan, 4000 Azerbaijanis, including women and children, were subjected to massacre by the Armenian army in June 1920.
Damien de Martel's report was sent to the French Foreign Ministry on July 20, 1920.
"...As for these [military] operations, I obtained from witnesses who came back recently from Armenia some information on how the operations are executed," according to the report. "In the south of Erivan, at the end of last June, the Armenian troops encircled 25 Tatar [Azerbaijani] villages, inhabited by more than 40,000 Muslims [Azerbaijanis]. This population, too close to the capital city to have any designs of independence, had always been quiet and peaceful; they were expelled with cannon shots to the Arax River and were forced to leave their villages, which were immediately occupied by [Armenian] refugees. During this event, about 4,000 persons were put to death, including women and children, drowned by Armenian soldiers in the Arax River".
On one hand this document evidences that the Armenians requiring help from the French, were urging the French to protect them from the Bolsheviks and even to occupy the 'historical Armenian lands' in Turkey.
On the other hand, the commissioner acknowledges the genocide committed against Azerbaijanis, according to the consulate general.
On March 1918, the Armenian Dashnaks led by Stepan Shaumyan committed the ruthless act of genocide against the Azerbaijani people. According to the Institute of History of the National Academy of Sciences (ANAS), 700,000 people became victims of the genocide in Azerbaijan within several days in 1918, starting March 24. As a result, 75 villages in Shamakhi, 122 in Guba and 115 in Zangezur were completely destroyed.
The memories of victims of the genocide are honored every year on March 31, in line with a decree signed in 1998 by Azerbaijan's national leader Heydar Aliyev.