How Much Longer Must the People of Artsakh Suffer?
The Armenians of Artsakh have been suffering direly due to the Azerbaijani blockade since December 12. Weeks have gone by as this humanitarian crisis worsens while nominal international efforts to lift the blockade change nothing. The Artsakh government has implemented a rationing regime and has appealed to Armenians throughout the world for help. The need for aid is immediate yet Armenians in the diaspora are not aware of what they can do.
How much longer must the people of Artsakh suffer before we act? Despite the blockade, there is a way to help. If sending supplies is not physically possible at the moment, Armenians can support the Artsakh population by sending it money. The Tekeyan Cultural Association of the United States and Canada (TCA) has found one way with the help of the Artsakh government. It is sending an initial $10,000 from its capital funds by January 10, and is launching an emergency campaign, hoping that this will inspire people to act in this critical time.
The Artsakh Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport maintains a list of large families with many children whose primary breadwinners were killed during the 2020 Artsakh 44-day war. The initial TCA aid will reach 100 families. Each family will receive $100, transferred directly into its bank account through the TCA representative in Armenia. This will allow keeping track of the allocation of aid and ensure that it goes directly to the truly needy. Each family will also confirm receipt of the aid. Commodities and medications still seem to be available sparingly there at a stiff price.
TCA is pledging another $10,000 of matching funds to jumpstart a public campaign to raise more money to be dispersed in the same way. All money raised will be immediately transferred without any administrative fees to families in need certified by the Artsakh government, as noted above.
The time to act is now. The lives of the 120,000 Armenians of Artsakh are at stake. Moreover, if Armenian Artsakh is depopulated through coordinated Azerbaijani actions, the future of the Republic of Armenia itself will be in grave danger. Azerbaijan’s leaders already have occupied small bits of Armenia’s territory and even periodically lay claims to the Armenian capital of Yerevan as Azerbaijani.