Saturday, November 01, 2014


Transmission

Deep Dive: Filling In The Gaps -- Reading The Ramil Safarov Case In Azerbaijan

Ramil Safarov
Ramil Safarov
On August 31, Hungary extradited convicted killer Ramil Safarov back to his native Azerbaijan -- where he was promptly pardoned by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. A former army officer, Safarov was in jail for violently murdering an Armenian serviceman in Hungary eight years ago. The pardon has inflamed passions in both countries. In Azerbaijan, Safarov has been greeted as a hero, while Armenians all over the world have protested.

In a guest post for RFE/RL, Katy Pearce, an assistant professor in the University of Washington's Department of Communications, looks at how, since the murder in 2004, the Azerbaijani media has framed the case and constructed a narrative around the killing that is sometimes at odds with the facts presented at the trial.

 
What happens when a state-controlled media sets an agenda and frames an issue in a particular way? In Azerbaijan, credulity -- a state of willingness to believe in something in the absence of reasonable proof or knowledge -- wins.
 
In a media environment controlled by the government like Azerbaijan’s, as my colleague Sarah Kendzior masterfully argues about Uzbekistan, all potential information is taken seriously. And, in the case of the Safarov affair in Azerbaijan, the government's elaborate framing of what occurred, without any evidence whatsoever, has created a well-believed narrative. This narrative, originating in 2004, is the basis for much Azerbaijani justification in 2012.
 
The murder of Lieutenant Gurgen Margaryan in 2004 by Azerbaijani Senior Lieutenant Ramil Safarov took place 10 years after a cease-fire agreement was brokered between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Ironically, the two military officers were participating in a NATO Partnership for Peace English-language course.
 
All governments, to different degrees, use the media to sway the public. They do this through agenda setting and framing. Agenda setting is the “public awareness” of a set of issues while framing is when an aspect of a perceived reality is made more salient in a communication context to promote a particular problem, definition, interpretation, or evaluation with cognitive schema for understanding. By following the media reports about the incident, it is possible to piece together the agenda setting and framing strategies.

WATCH: Azerbaijanis react to the Safarov extradition and pardon:
What Do Azerbaijanis Think Of Freed Killer Ramil Safarov?i
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September 05, 2012
Azerbaijan has pardoned Ramil Safarov, an army lieutenant convicted in the 2004 ax murder of an Armenian soldier for allegedly "insulting" the Azerbaijani flag. Safarov had been jailed for life in Hungary, where the murder took place. But he was handed over to Azerbaijan last week and given a hero's welcome. RFE/RL's Azerbaijani Service asked people in Baku how they regard Safarov.
 
All news content that included the name Ramil Safarov and was translated into English by the BBC Monitoring Service from 2004-2011 was analyzed. (The search was conducted through infoweb.newsbank.com and LexisNexis.) Though these results do not include every possible mention of the Safarov affair, it can be considered fairly representative of news in the countries it covers. The full text of media coverage is available here.
 
The first reports of the murder were published on the same day as the event and placed Safarov as the sole suspect. The Associated Press quoted the Budapest police major saying: “[W]e suspect Ramil S. of having committed murder with unusual cruelty…a number of knife wounds…the victim’s head was practically severed from his body.” The Armenian media also reported the murder on the day that it occurred, based on a statement from the Armenian Defense Ministry. The initial framing of the murder by the ministry placed Safarov as a representative of the Azerbaijani government, with claims that the crime was “a direct consequence of the policy of aggression, hatred, and animosity towards the people of Armenia.”
 
Azerbaijani ATV television news responded to the Armenian Defense Ministry's statement with a “clarification” from the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry that Safarov’s mental state must be considered. This is the beginning of the dominant Azerbaijani framing of “Safarov was driven to do this because the Armenians made him suffer.” In this report, Safarov’s status as an internally displaced person (IDP) was highlighted -- his family was from an Armenian-occupied region and his family “was living in a Baku hostel in deplorable conditions,” although the statement did not note for how long this had occurred. The Azerbaijani ministry spokesman also noted that “many” of Safarov’s relatives were killed by Armenians during the war, although later reports vary in the number of relatives killed. Thus, Safarov-as-victim was the first introduction to the story for the Azerbaijani audience, a completely different framing than the Armenian narrative.
 
The day after the murder, AFP published quotes from a statement by the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry, again framing the issue as Safarov-as-victim-of-Armenian-aggression and focusing on his IDP status, saying that “[A]ll this could not have failed to have an effect on Ramil Safarov‘s emotional state.” The AFP article was the introduction of what would become the understood straw that broke the camel’s back: Margaryan insulting Safarov. AFP quoted Azerbaijani officials claiming that Margaryan “impugning [Safarov’s] honor as an officer and Azeri citizen and insulting the memory of victims of the Armenian aggression,” but without any attribution for this information.
 
At this point, no Azerbaijani officials had been allowed to speak to Safarov. The only possible source would be one of the other students at the English-language program. But how would Azerbaijani officials be able to speak to the other students within 24 hours of the event? It is likely that as witnesses, they were instructed by police to not speak to anyone about what had occurred. Moreover, as military officers, these men have had operations security ingrained into their psyches. Information disclosure is not something that they would take lightly. Nonetheless, there was a second Azerbaijani officer, Anar Aliyev, on the program who may have spoken to someone about insults, but it is impossible to know if this occurred or if the insult argument originated from Baku.
 
The insult incident also conflicts with statements from the program’s Hungarian rector, quoted in Hungarian media, that the Armenian and Azerbaijani officers were on good terms and often joked with one another.
 
A week after the murder, the kindling of the insult incident began to ignite. A representative of the Karabakh War Veterans’ organization held -- for no apparent reason -- a press conference on the Safarov case and said that it “did not rule out that the Armenian officer had made insulting remarks in his relations with Safarov, which brought about the incident in the end.”
 
Then the insult turned into “systematically and purposefully exerted psychological pressure” from Margaryan to Safarov, according to Bilik news on February 25. Similarly, Azerbaijani Space TV also reported on February 25 that “It turned out that a week before the incident, the killed man and another Armenian officer insulted Safarov in a dormitory. The tension was defused through the intervention of other officers. However, as Safarov did not produce a strong reaction, the Armenian officers regarded this as his cowardice and cruelly insulted him. When they learnt that Safarov was from the currently occupied Cabrayil District, the Armenian officers started insulting him in a crueler way and exasperated him.”
 
It would be logical to inquire about the source of this information, yet none exists. Azerbaijani news agency Turan said that the information originated from “unofficial sources” on March 3, but in the same report: “[A]sked what was known about the reasons for the incident that led to the killing of an Armenian officer, the [Defense Ministry] spokesman said the investigation into the incident was still under way and that the Hungarian side was not disclosing any information in the interests of the investigation.”
 
On February 27, the Azerbaijani ombudsman added more twists to the insult: “Not only did he [Armenian officer] play a tape with the voices of suffering Azerbaijani women and girls, but he also cleaned his shoes with an Azerbaijani flag in front of Ramil [Safarov]. At that moment Ramil defended his national honor and responded immediately and correctly to this. I think that the world community should accept this.”
 
How did the ombudsman learn that a tape of suffering Azerbaijanis was played? And how did Margaryan, age 16 in 1994 during the last possible time any such tape could have been created, have such a tape 10 years later? And why did he bring this tape to Budapest with him? Similarly, how did the ombudsman learn that about a shoe cleaning incident?
 
Finally, on March 9, there is a third-hand report of repeated insults. Azerbaijani Space TV reported that Safarov’s father met with Safarov and was told about the repeated insults. What seems strange is that it is a reasonable assumption that Safarov’s attorneys instructed him to not admit guilt or discuss possible motives with anyone, even his father. Nonetheless, Safarov’s attorney also spoke to Space TV and said the incident had occurred because of the Armenian officer’s “unethical behavior.” After this, the news about the Safarov case quieted down for a while, but in May, the ombudsman and Safarov’s attorney met with Safarov. The attorney reported that only 10 people had been questioned as witnesses and three forensic examinations had been carried out and that Attorney Ismayilov had not been allowed to closely familiarize himself with the case. Given this, the claims over what occurred during the murder are even stranger.
 
The trial began in November 2004, but was postponed until February 2005. In March, the Azerbaijani Organization of Karabakh Liberation and other NGOs published a document making the insult argument to the Hungarian parliament, media, and the court itself to no avail. The trial finished in April 2006 during which Safarov was found guilty of both the murder of Margaryan and the intended murder of the other Armenian officer. The sentence was upheld in February 2007. In August of 2012, Safarov returned to Azerbaijan and was immediately pardoned and promoted as a hero.
 
In the days following the pardon, the Azerbaijani social media discussion frequently cited the insult incident as fact and the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry mentioned it in a letter to Hungary (it is unclear for whom the letter is intended).
 
It is impossible to know if, in fact, Margaryan or the other Armenian officers insulted Safarov, played a tape of suffering Azerbaijanis, or cleaned his shoes with the Azerbaijani flag. However, no witness came forward in the media or the trial to support any of these claims. Non-Armenian or Azerbaijani witnesses have no motivation to not testify to what they saw. Despite the absence of evidence, the vast majority of Azerbaijanis seem to believe that Margaryan insulted Safarov.
 
What role does evidence play in Azerbaijan? The media has to promote the state’s line and does so by engaging in kompromat (from the Russian abbreviation of compromising materials). Traditionally mudslinging about political figures, kompromat "often employs somewhat dubious facts and figures, sometimes with a grain of truth and sometimes essentially groundless." Thus, for the media, evidence does not matter.
 
But why are Azerbaijani citizens willing to believe stories without evidence? First, the psychological state of Azerbaijani citizens is marked by a “pervasive bitterness and growing sense of deprivation,”  a general sense of apathy and fear, and a lack of trust in others.
 
Second, the Azerbaijani public trusts the state run media. Nearly half of Azerbaijanis (in an early 2012 survey conducted by the Caucasus Research Resource Center) cite ANS television as the most trusted TV channel, and a quarter named Khazar. Moreover, nearly three-quarters of Azerbaijanis believe that TV channels provide unbiased news coverage. Third, the narrative presented by the Azerbaijani media fed into nationalistic and anti-Armenian attitudes already predominant amongst Azerbaijanis.
 
This leads to a low willingness to question media reports or express beliefs contrary to the dominant government narrative. An Azerbaijani citizen criticizing this story could experience attacks like blogger Arzu Geybullayeva or anonymous blogger Scary Azeri have. These two live outside of Azerbaijan and have less to fear than Azerbaijani citizens inside.
 
Even critics of the government are reluctant to question the government’s position on the Safarov affair. Emin Milli, a known opposition figure, recently blogged that there are Azerbaijanis who disagree with “the disgusting government propaganda,” although he too seems to believe that the insults occurred. And while it may indeed be the case that some Azerbaijanis deviate from the government, it is not realistic or safe for them to speak out.
 
Will credulity win in Azerbaijan? It certainly appears to be the case.

-- Katy Pearce

Editor's note: Anyone interested in submitting a counter-argument to Pearce's analysis is free to do so. Submissions should be in English, run no more than 1000 words, and be exclusive to RFE/RL. Email submissions to Zach Peterson: petersonz[AT]rferl[DOT]org. Or leave a comment below.
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by: ne from: Abkhazia
September 10, 2012 13:39
Even if Margaryan had insulted Safarov, that couldn't justify a murderous attack against a sleeping man.

In any case, welcoming a murdering officer like a hero and rewarding him with a promotion makes you wonder about the wisdom of the Azeri leadership.

Your analysis of the level of credulity in Azerbaidjan is interesting. One day before the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy, may I suggest you elaborate on the level of credulity in the US, where the extraordinary absurdities of the official 9/11 story remain mostly unquestioned by the representatives of the governement and the mainstream media?



In Response

by: Anar from: Netherlands
September 10, 2012 15:13
In any case that wasn't a smart thing to do even if the insults took place. But it would also be inobjective and biased to judge from a point of view of a non-involved person, whose family members weren't killed and fled from home. I don't know what I would feel or react if I heard -enemy soldiers- making fun of my loss of family and home.

Regarding the credulity - In Azerbaijan mass media controlled by government, like AZTv, LiderTv, 1news.az, Space, ATV, etc, are ridiculed by the society. I think you know this, don't you Katy?
In Response

by: Avery from: USA
September 10, 2012 20:19
{I don't know what I would feel or react if I heard -enemy soldiers- making fun of my loss of family and home.} You would actually enter the room of a sleeping man and hack him to death with an ax ? Would you agree to be hacked to death if you insulted, let us say, the mother of an Armenian man ? you are quite "understanding" for one reason only: the victim was Armenian. If he was one of your tribe, I am sure you would not be so tolerant of a psychopath who murdered a sleeping man. Sick.
In Response

by: Anar from: Netherlands
September 11, 2012 09:31
It was never proven that he was sleeping either.
Avery from USA - lets say your female cousins, other family members were raped and murdered (and thats how Armenians did the war - Khojaly for instance), and then you come to Hungary, and 2 armenian soldiers start telling you how enjoying it was, what a looser you are not to be able to protect them... and constantly do this. what would you do? If you think armenian, or azeri, or chechen, or abkhaz, or anyone from Caucasus would not react then you dont have ANY idea about the values and morale of that part of the world. your "victim" is the one who started the war, who killed first. Sleeping man.. in Khojaly armenians raped 13 year old girls, old men and women who barely walk, cut a pregnant woman and took an unborn child.. what if one of them was his family member.. or yours, what would you do after being reminded, "Joked"? of course.. armenians are only victims who killed thousands of Azeris, made a terrorist attack in metro.. and then azeris are people who have to tolerate them. very objective. blame the one who started the war - armenians. the reason of all the unhappiness in South Caucasus.
In Response

by: Avery from: USA
September 14, 2012 23:28
{It was never proven that he was sleeping either.} of course not.

I guess that is why this not true: [Handing down a life sentence, the judge emphasized that “the murder of a sleeping man in peace time is always a crime and cannot be an act of heroism”.]


Nothing is proven in the mind of an AzeriTatarTurk, except the myths they themselves create and believe in.

And the reason for all the unhappiness in South Caucasus is your invading TatarTurk ancestors. Armenians were there for 4000 years when Oghuz Turk tribes invaded from East and Central Asia about 1000 years ago. All the ethnic cleansing, bloodshed, massacres, desecration and destruction of Christian religious sites started with those invasions of nomadic Turkic tribes.
In Response

by: Human from: World
September 13, 2012 17:34
Katy Pearce - Please be journalist! You are not blogger who states on limited text... Show both sides of coin, do deeper research. Do not state on simple people. Simple people not indicators of nation... They are stating only what they hear and not able do research! Good luck on your career and if you want to be a journalist especially professional one, put more attention on my words.

Now armenians who is writing here from name of different nations and who doesn't! Do not write here silly things regarding pogroms and etc. first of all there is no evidence... second one remember earlier history, 1987, 1904-06 and etc... If you do not, I can remind you!

At the end want to state great phrase of Einstein: For smart people man divides to good one and to bad one, for silly people divides by race, religion, nation, color and etc... Be smart!
In Response

by: LOVE
September 18, 2012 04:30
Let's simplify...

A man hacks and knifes a sleeping man 26 times and nearly decapatates that person's head off. Then goes after another man, but the second man was lucky because his door was locked.

Let's think about this...
-He is killer, murderer, needs to be jailed for life, psychopath, serial killer, bruttal, ......

Now let's add another layer...
The axe-killer and the victim are from different countries, and reportedly the murder occured because of it... THIS is called XENOPHOBIA.

Another layer...
The country that tried and convicted the AXE-KILLER, give him a life sentence and then transfered him to his fatherland to continue serve the sentence. But it's Fatherland, freed him and made him into a hero.

Conclusion:
The Fatherland (which is Azerbaijan): Promotes that AXE KILLERS are a POSITIVE thing, its an ACCEPTABLE ACT, XENOPHOBIA is Acceptable, It promotes hate, it promotes burtality. AND AND AND It OBVIOUSLY does NOT Imprison killers, psychopaths, serial killers...
In Response

by: Lex Slvitskij from: New York
September 20, 2012 19:56
It is ironical that the Armenian side is angry with pardoning of Ramil Safarov when they set the precedent by glorifying international terrorists from ASALA group who killed civilians and military in Lebanon, France, Canada. There is a monument to Mote Merkonian, the commander of the group that massacred women and children in Khodjaly, an azerbaijani village that was not even a part of Nagorny Karabakh. There was another Iraqui Armenian terrorist who blew up Turkish airlines and was received in Yerevan as a hero, cant remember his name. The Armenian side is hypocritical.

by: Armenian from: US
September 10, 2012 15:27
There was no prove during trial that Margaryan insulted him. Even if he did it does not give him reason to kill. Idiot azeris all over the net work insult Armenian does it mean Armenians have kill them all. 100% Tatar/Seljuk barbaric attitude! This are the neighbors Armenians have. Sorry for you Armenia!
In Response

by: Armenian L. from: USA
September 11, 2012 22:36
This anar from Netherland is actually telling the truth about all that raping, killing,cutting but there is one thing, all this was done by azeris and turks, not the Armenians.
In Response

by: Karina from: New York, USA
September 12, 2012 16:58
Sometimes I wonder: How it’s possible that Azeris remember so well about Khodgaly, but don’t remember about Sumgait, Baku, and other cities where so many Armenians lived before 1988 - 1990. They completely forgot that so many were killed or injured.
I was born in Baku and at the time I had to flee many people was already dead or injured and almost 500000 Armenians from Azerbaijan became refugees. It was long before the war which started later and so called ‘Khodgaly’ happened and nobody knows what exactly happened there because there are no evident and the ones that they are using mostly not legit. On the other hand there are documented facts of cruel murders and rapes and other atrocities which Armenians – citizens of Azerbaijan were victims of.
In Response

by: hayuhi from: USA
September 13, 2012 04:35
Well said Armenian.. EXACTLY MY POINT.
In Response

by: Armen from: Yerevan
September 12, 2012 11:43

Author of many thanks!
“It was never proven that he was sleeping either’.
There are basic laws of jurisprudence. Killer can say what he wants, his victim can not answer. Not dead to prove that he was killed by the pervasive nature he was sleeping, and the killer has to prove himself. As a doctor say, the killer struck 17 blows, so do or maniacs or pants, or Azerbaijani soldiers. Although this is the same. I wonder what should a man do in my bedroom late at night? Okay, let's say, he was not sleeping, still he was killed unarmed. But let this coward killer know, whose eyes read the indescribable horror that it will still be found!

by: Ray F. from: Lawrence, KS
September 10, 2012 15:44
Nice report, and unfortunately, such delusions are not unique to the Azeri people. There is a liberal (western) idea which posits that new technologies offer greater exposure to more information which, in turn, will lead to truth and justice. As this week’s Tangled Web installment suggests, just the opposite may be true. These same high-tech tools can be used by the unscrupulous to spread falsehood and injustice.
In Response

by: William from: Aragon
September 10, 2012 23:25
Sometimes Ray, I wonder if we are still thinking like cave-men but running around with high-technology devices and weapons. The basic issues confronting humans appear to not have changed much in 7,000 years.

by: Condemn Murder
September 10, 2012 15:45
Interesting analysis, but my question is why spend so much time determining whether Safarov was insulted or not. Would that then justify axing someone to death? Would that then justify lionizing someone as a national hero, because he attacked a defenseless, sleeping man, because of his ethnicity? I guess for many people in Azerbaijan it unfortunately would.

The more interesting question is what kind of shocking pathology of the Azerbaijani government has been brought to light and how this forecloses any Azerbaijani hope of ever ruling over Karabakh. How can anyone advocate for Armenians to be forced under the rule of Azerbaijan, a country that celebrates their murder, even when they are asleep.

I would also recommend reading Safarov's initial confession of the crime. In it, he expresses regret that he was not able to kill more Armenians: http://budapest.sumgait.info/safarov-interrogation.htm

by: Ray from: Isreal
September 10, 2012 16:15
I think the oil money has become like a drug addicion for the Azerbajani goverment ! I would call what Ramil Safarov did as being a coward
and a killer not a hero! Lets aslo not forget the Olympics in London
10 Million for 2 gold medals!
Aliev you have just lowered yourself and you nation shame on you! Wow now I know how a Armenian feels about your country.
In Response

by: Sabina
September 10, 2012 19:21
Ray from Israel I guess you just have no idea what you are saying.
In Response

by: lt from: usa
September 10, 2012 20:45
Ray, you would understand how an Armenian would feel, when it is neighbored by Turkey and Azerbaijan, who spent millions and millions or dollars in USA and all around the world to spread their lies, bribe scholars, historians, to change the face of history. I feel sorry for the general public that don't get the facts from both sides. As usual money rules in world and government affairs and right now Azerbaijan spreads its oil money all around and tries to create falsehood. In general lies don't last too long and justice will prevail. What would you expect from the people of the country whose president spreads hatred, killing, war, extortion......
In Response

by: Dezo from: Bosnia
September 12, 2012 08:03
Dude the Armenian diaspora is the 3rd most influential society in the USA, and number 2 in the world, those are the words of Zbigniew Brzezinski. So it doesnt matter how much money you have, what matters is the diaspora. Armenians are spread all over the world, I have 3 Armenian friends and I have never even seen an Azeri. Im guessing the Azeris are more regional living guys. Anyway if money was really that powerful then the Saudis would have the best public image ever, but they dont. Despite the money of all the Arab oligarchs, we know whats going on. And despite Azeris money, the Armenian diaspora is much more powerful and has better control of information.
In Response

by: Dezo from: Bosnia
September 12, 2012 08:05
Dude I watched all of the Olympics fighing matches and the Azeris didnt win 2 gold for boxing. Thats was what the scandal was about. But I have to say that was never proven either. Just like this article talks about people believing in stuff without evidence, you fall into the pitt. The Azeris won 2 gold for wrestling, I think.
In Response

by: hayuhi from: USA
September 13, 2012 04:54
Azerbajian with the population of 9 million plus winning only two medals is simply sad.. a country that has money pouring out of every rock can't even produce winners.... but then again, we knew that the govt dictator the devil himself stashes all the money in international banks creating and growing his empire and lets his people live in poverty..

by: Bart from: USA
September 10, 2012 16:49
Your analysis of the deplorable Safarov incident sheds light on the mendacity of the Azeri media--often distorting the facts, and thus fueling poisonous hatred toward Armenians. This strategy is used by the current Azeri government to sway public opinion and ultimately blame Armenians for their country’s poor socio-economic conditions. How can a state with BILLIONS of petro-dollars have its citizens living in “deplorable conditions” in Baku? To the rational person, this question might be rhetorical; however, I am interested in getting the perspective of Azeri sympathizers, who, thus far have proved to be irrational chameleons.

by: Danny
September 10, 2012 17:10
Whoever follows developments in the region in the last 20 years would hardly be surprised with what happened in case of this murder. Azeri successive governments (with Aliyev's regime intensifying the trend) policy is to use nationalism in general and fostered hatred towards anything Armenian as a channel to vent regular Azeris frustration with their lives.

There are plenty of examples. It’s official policy in Azerbaijan that people with Armenian last names - no matter their citizenship - are denied entry to Azerbaijan as a state policy (yes, USA citizens included). Azeri president recently officially declared that “Armenians of the world” are enemies, and that current Armenian state “lays on Azeri lands”. International proposals of “confidence building” are routinely torpedoed by Azeri side – the most vivid example of this is rejecting proposal of mediators to withdraw snipers on both sides from the contact line – Azeri government refused to do so. Nothing is spared – even sports: a couple of years ago Azerbaijan denied entry of Armenian soccer team on the ground that "Armenian national anthem should not be played on Azeri soil".

The international community has been too timid to counter the long history of Azeri official hatred-based policy. Safarov's case is yet another manifestation of it - and would not have happened if Azeri regime was given clear rebuttal in the past.
In Response

by: hayuhi from: USA
September 13, 2012 04:55
THANK YOU Danny.. Thank you for your post..

by: Mike Aramyan from: Los Angeles, CA
September 10, 2012 19:34
Nice piece; however, who why even discuss an issue that is irrelevant in any murder statute?!?!

Words alone are never a defense or enough to kill someone! An aggressive state, sends out aggressive citizens around the World.

Most countries, including US, are blind to the fact that states like this are a menace to the world and still "kiss up" to them because of their own pockets and oil interests!

by: Sabina from: Baku
September 10, 2012 19:39
Im sorry, but after reading the comments I feel like Armenians are angels. they have hearts full of love for Azerbaijanis. Please, gimme a break people. Both both nations lost, both nations suffered from war and they BOTH hate each other. Dont be bias!
In Response

by: Kaloust from: USA
September 10, 2012 21:04
Sabina, yes Armenians are not "angels"..."Both nations lost, both nations suffered from war. AGREE ..."and they BOTH hate each other". This one is far from the truth. That is what your government likes you to believe, so they can have public support when they restart the war. Armenians don't hate anyone. Please check your facts on the ground before expressing an opinion. All they want is to live in peace on their God-given land. Is it too much to ask?
In Response

by: Niki from: Canada
September 11, 2012 19:11
Actually, as an Azeri growing up in Canada, I have personally been verbally attacked by Armenians. When I was with a boyfriend who was Armenian, his family shunned him and threatened to cut ties completely if he stays with me. No one in the Azeri community reacted so harshly or abused him or I.
In Response

by: Dezo from: Bosnia
September 12, 2012 08:08
In Bosnia, one of my Armenian friends converted to Islam and his family excommunicated him, his father beat him and his mother disowned him. Because according to his parents "Islam is for Turks" and if there is one thing Armenian hate, that is Islam and Turks. I guess Azeris would qualify for that. All Im saying is the hatred seems mutual.
In Response

by: hayuhi from: USA
September 13, 2012 04:58
Dezo.. YOU ARE WRONG AGAIN!!>. What is it with you?? can't get anything right I see...

I don't HATE ALL TURKS AND AZERIS.. I know and many of my brethren know that MANY Turks and Azeris are NOT LIKE THEIR MAJORITY OF PEOPLE who support such hatred and aggression toward Armenians.. We admire them.. We respect them.. We want them to be safe...

however, MAJORITY still have backward thinking and that is the sad part..

you having Armenians friends apparently don't know much about Armenians in general... i would suggest you stop referencing things that does not relate to the nation...
In Response

by: shawn from: los angeles
September 10, 2012 21:06
Turkes killed my people but I dont hate the turkish people, why?? because of the race??? Government and nationalist illiterate people is who I dont like . Why would I hate an azeri person that is nice, intelligent and peaceful??
In Response

by: Sinav from: South Azerbaijan
September 10, 2012 22:54
Actually all I got by reading this article was I guess meant to convey that all what the Azerbaijani government says are total lies and the Azerbaijani people have almost been deceived and all what Katy Pearce and her already busted colleagues say just spits the gist of reality. I’m not sure for what sort of story Mrs. Pearce is harvesting comments but what’s clear is that these people are after basing a foundation for their own strand of thought. They have assembled their own team to ridicule us in their own portals and we’ll have to expose them. This is just irritating that those who are guilty of rape, torture, occupation, double-standards and sanctioned assassinations are the ones addressing us their version of observation so assuredly and since they cooperate with the Azerbaijani opposition they just feel impeccable and interestingly, they will find us liars if we protest why the United Nations’ Security Council resolutions regarding the Karabakh conflict and the International laws and the pledge in the charter of United Nations have not been realized in the case of Azerbaijan.
In Response

by: hayuhi from: USA
September 13, 2012 05:00
Sinav from Azerbajian (made up country that never existed until Stalin gave away our lands for his own selfish reasons).... the truth hurts.. I know.. however, the sooner you realize the truth, the better for your soul....
In Response

by: Jack from: Los Angeles
September 11, 2012 00:33
Sabina
Look back to 1988 pogroms of Armenians in Azerbaijan to nazy hatred on present day. See all the blood that was spelled because of Azery nationalism. Then think of how bunkrupt as a society you've become...
In Response

by: Zak from: Toronto
September 11, 2012 01:35
Comparing to the blood-thirsty murderer and those who cherish his "honour", Yes Armenians are indeed angels.
In Response

by: Love
September 18, 2012 03:43
That is funny!!!!!!

So what do you say to the THOUSANDS of Armenians who CONVERTED to ISLAM (during the Armenian Genocide in 1915 by the Turks) and stayed with that Religion and still continue to practice and respect ISLAM!

It's a sad day, to make such an ignorant comment!

by: mike from: usa
September 10, 2012 19:44
there is no evidence of his family ever being in any refuge camp just like he said the Armenian officer insulted he was proven in court to be false, he was not even in Azerbaijan when the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan started, besides would it be brave for a Jewish man to kill a German man in his sleep that had nothing to do with things that happened years ago, it's a shame and for anyone to praise a coward for killing a man in his sleep is a coward that would do the same, a nation of cowards
In Response

by: Anar from: Netherlands
September 11, 2012 09:47
Nation of cowards is a nation that starts a war during the night, tortures, rapes 13 year old girls, barely walking old, pregnant, and other armless civilians in Khojaly, who instead of discussion start shooting in Karabakh, who ignore UN resolutions to free occupied lands. - guess who I am talking about? the initiators of Karabakh war and aggressors - Armenia.
I am praising a murderer as a hero. I am just telling to open your eyes wide and look why it happened. and it will happen all over the world, armenians will do terrorist attacks, like in Baku metro, Azeris will kill armenians as a result of their aggression, UNLESS the lands are freed and people get back to their homes and live peacefully together. Azeris never shot a single armenian in Karabakh (of course your history makers will start telling made up facts about crap, but in my city Ganja, half of my parents' classmates were armenians, and they keep in touch even now. IN AZERBAIJAN they lived and nobody hurt them. but Armenia starts the war and screw things up. way to go Armenians
In Response

by: hayuhi from: USA
September 13, 2012 05:04
Anar... it is very heroic of you to describe your own country barbaric ways of torturing and killing Armenians just because they are Armenians..

Keep it up... thank you for spreading the news for the world to know how Azeris and their step-brothers Turks can do such cruel and barbaric murders to another nation... because of having NO NATION, NO HISTORY, NO CULTURE, NO ARTS AND MUSIC, NO EXISTANCE.....jealously savored and grew so much that hatred was born... and that is EXACTLY what your govt is doing... breeding hate and agression in every Azeri toward Armenians... that is a fact.. just look at the chain of events.. IT IS THERE BLACK AND WHITE..
In Response

by: Avery from: USA
September 14, 2012 23:17
{Azeris will kill Armenians… } {….UNLESS the lands are freed}
Don't threaten us pal: we are not the same Armenians that meekly marched in long columns to their deaths in 1915.
Your leaders made similar threats in 1991 when they invaded NKR.

Abulfaz Elchibey boasted that he would hang the last Armenian he found in Karabagh in the central square of Stepanakert.
The result was that 35,000 Azeri invading troops and their allies were KIA. Armenians lost about 5,000 KIA. Your chickenhawk troops were running like rabbits back to Baku in 1994 when Sultan Aliyev Sr begged Moscow to order NKR Army to stop advancing.

Every adult male in NKR is trained for warfare. The whole country is an armed camp: a modern Sparta.
Even women know how to use an RPG and Igla.
Go ahead and invade: see what happens.
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Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at transmission+rferl.org

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