Twenty eight years has passed since January 20, 1990 events, which went down the history of Azerbaijani people as Bloody January tragedy.
The monstrous act of terrorism committed in that day by military machine of the former Soviet Union against the people of Azerbaijan, will always remain as a black page in history of civilization, and as one of the worst crimes against humanity.
Hundreds of innocent people were killed and wounded as a result of the massive terror, the massacre of peaceful population stood up for national liberation and territorial integrity of its country. In these conditions, no resolute measures to prevent the conflict were undertaken.
Tanks and armored troop-carriers were destroying everything in their path in the streets of Baku, with soldiers grimly firing at all and everything around them. The bullets would reach the people not only on the streets, but even in busses and their own apartments. Even ambulances carrying those wounded were subjected to fire. As a result, 147 were killed, about 700 wounded and over 800 unlawfully arrested.
On 20 January and previous tragic events in Azerbaijan’s history became a manifestation of the aforethought policy pursued against our people over the 20th century. Stages of this policy are genocide of the Azerbaijani people, continued annexation of the Azerbaijan’s territory during Soviet time resulted in its reduction from 125 thousand to 87 thousand sq. km., developments in Nagorny Karabakh started with the connivance of the Soviet leadership, and expatriation of Azerbaijanis from their native lands in Armenia.
However tragic the January 1990 massacre is, it failed to crush the will of the Azerbaijani people, its aspiration to struggle for national liberation. The sons and daughters of the Motherland killed at that terrible night have written a brightest page in history of Azerbaijan, and paved the way to national liberation and independence of the people.
One of the highest points in Baku is the place, which became sacred for every Azerbaijani. It is the Alley of Martyrs, where victims of the 20 January tragedy, and those who died in the battles against the Armenian aggression were buried.
Thousands of people visit this place yearly on 20 January to commemorate those who sacrificed their lives for freedom and sovereignty of Azerbaijan. Generations will change, but memory of them will live on forever in hearts.