Azerbaijani Talysh activists call on their compatriots not to take part in clashes against Armenians: “The conflict between Azerbaijan and Nagorno-Karabakh over the past week has caused heavy losses on both sides.

We, as a group of Talysh activists, send our condolences to the innocent victims on both sides of the conflict. We are extremely saddened by these events.

By addressing both sides, we advocate friendship and brotherhood among the peoples of the Caucasus, as well as respect towards international norms regarding peoples’ right to determine their own fate. There is no military solution to this conflict as this will only lead to problems passed down to future generations.

We are extremely concerned by the Azerbaijani government’s systematic efforts to send Talysh men to the front, by the large number of Talysh deaths, and the efforts to spread hate towards Armenians by exploiting Talysh martyrs.

It is clear to us that the majority of Talysh people are unhappy with this situation. On the one hand, the Azerbaijani government is suppressing any form of freedom of speech in the country. It is manipulating those with intimate connections to the government to demonstrate as if there is hate among the Talysh towards Armenians.

We call on the Azerbaijani government for the last to put an end to its plan to destroy and spread hate among the Talysh people. We advocate a brotherly co-existence among the peoples of the Caucasus. If certain people support another route then we call on them not to involve us in their plans.

We call on the Talysh people not to succumb to hate speech propaganda directed towards Armenians and Azerbaijanis. We call on them to not join the military and avoid being subjected to gunfire in the clashes. We have never been antagonistic to any people throughout our history and we will continue this way”.