The Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin regrets to state that Azerbaijan has committed barbaric acts against Armenian spiritual and cultural heritage during and after the second war that took place in Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh). This is stated in the statement issued by the Information System of the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin. The following is also stated:
“Today, during relative peace, Armenian shrines continue to be under target, and the purpose is to eliminate the traces and accounts of Armenian identity on our historic land of Artsakh. Shrines have already been destroyed, churches and monasteries have been desecrated, records certifying their history have been erased, and cross-stones and the tombs of the deceased have been dishonored in the territories that are now under the control of Azerbaijan.
Attempts are being made to usurp nearly 150 Armenian shrines and present them to the world as the religious heritage of the Udis through distortion and falsification of history. A few days ago, there was news about Azerbaijan’s destruction of the spiritual symbols of the Ghazanchetsots Holy Savior Cathedral of Shushi and the removal of the domes with the pretext of renovation work.
The Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin condemns the cultural genocide being committed by the Azerbaijani authorities, which is an overt expression of Armenophobia, intolerance and hostility. This policy can’t in any way contribute to the reestablishment of stability and durable peace in the region.
The Armenian Holy Apostolic Church must continue to raise these issues before the international community and relevant institutions in order to put an end to the phenomena violating the rights of the Armenian people.”