Azeri Embassy Incites Brawl at French Parliament

The capacity crowd, among them members of the French Parliament, turned out to mark the anniversary of Sumgait Porgoms

People affiliated with the Azeri Embassy in Paris begin brawl at an event marking the 25th anniversary of the Sumgait Porgoms

PARIS—An Azeri delegation disrupted a commemoration event marking the 25th anniversary of the Sumgait Massacres taking place inside the French Parliament Tuesday when they refused to stand in observance of a moment of silence for the victims.

According to Mourad Papazian, chairman of the Coordinating Council of Armenian Organization in France (CCAF), one of the Azeris punched an event organizer, Hratch Varjabedian, who had approached them to inquire about their show of disrespect.

Eyewitnesses reported that one of the Azeris shouted that he would only stand to commemorate “the victims of Khojaly.”

After Varjabedian was punched, a group of young Armenians rushed to the scene and a brawl ensued before audience members broke it up and police cordoned off the room.

Surprisingly, Azerbaijan’s Ambassador to France, Elchin Amirbeyov immediately arrived at the scene accompanied by other embassy officials and issued a condemnation of the attack.

The APA news agency reported on its Web site that Armenians locked the door of the auditorium and were accompanied by French members of the audience in “brutally” beating them.

The event, entitled, “Sumgait events after 25 years: the present situation and future prospects for the people of Nagorno-Karabakh” was organized by French Parliament member Francois Roshebloun and was attended by several parliament members.

The Nor Serount in France (AYF of France) cancelled a day-long demonstration scheduled to take place Wednesday in front of the Azeri Embassy in France for fear of more Azeri-initiated violence.

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