Azerbaijan news

Horrific details of the Khojaly genocide revealed in court

Former Armenian militant Rashid Beglaryan revealed the facts of the mass murder of residents of the  of Khojaly in Karabakh, which were hidden by the Armenians. Beglaryan, 62, was arrested in August 2023 while attempting to illegally cross the Azerbaijani-Armenian border in the Lachin region. The investigation was conducted by the Main Investigative Department of the State Security Service. A few days ago, the trial began in the court building of the Sabunchy district, under the chairmanship of Ali Suleymanov, the military judge of the Fizuli region. A lawyer and an interpreter are provided to the accused free of charge in court.

During the investigation and in court, Beglaryan admitted his personal participation in the battles against Azerbaijan in Khojaly, Aghdam, Askeran, and Kalbajar. Having started his career as an armed separatist as the driver of Karabakh commander Vitaly Balasanyan, Beglaryan rose to the position of commander of the armed separatist detachment.   He admitted that on February 26, 1992, the Armenian armed group, of which he was a member, shot about two hundred Azerbaijani civilians with special cruelty.

“Armenian armed detachments were formed everywhere, including in Askeran,” the defendant said. – Our squad was led by Vitaly Balasanyan. I conducted a number of his assignments as a driver. He was friends with Sego Dolukhanyan, a resident of Askeran. Sego said that the residents of Khojaly will be met by the Askeran detachment. The Karabakh Armenians knew that peaceful Azerbaijanis would move along this path. Fifty or sixty armed men were waiting for them. The goal was to wait for the gathering of residents of Khojaly and kill them. There were about 150 civilians there. Sego said that when they reach the Askeran fortress, they will all be shot. We hated Azerbaijanis back then, and we would have killed them even without orders. When the crowd gathered in one place, we pointed our guns at them. They begged for mercy, and we looked at them and laughed. There were women, old people and children among them. Then we started shooting them. It was a very scary picture. Only a small group was able to escape by fleeing to Aghdam. The rest were killed. We were collecting valuables from the bodies. A week later, I heard from the Askeran Armenians that the bodies of the executed Azerbaijanis were decomposing, and an epidemic could begin. Therefore, we collected the bodies of the residents of Khojaly and buried them in one place. I didn’t kill anyone myself, I was just present.”

When asked by the judge whether he recognizes that Armenians committed genocide in Khojaly, Beglaryan answered in the affirmative.

It also turned out in court that about two million euros were transferred to Rashid Beglaryan’s account from France for financial assistance to criminals.

According to the Azerbaijani State Security Service, Beglaryan was arrested on suspicion of torturing Azerbaijani prisoners held at the Children’s Hospital No. 3 in Khankendi. He was charged under Articles 112 of the Criminal Code (imprisonment in violation of international law), 113 (torture), 115 (violation of the laws and customs of war), 279 (participation in armed formations not provided for by law) and 318 (illegal crossing of the state border of Azerbaijan).

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