Mr. Speaker, 30 years ago, pogroms were committed against the Armenians in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan. For seven days in January 1990, hundreds of Armenians were beaten, expelled from the city or killed.
These crimes against the Armenians escalated and resulted in an almost complete ethnic cleansing of Armenians from the country. Close to 500,000 Armenians were deported and sought refuge in various countries around the world, including Canada.
These events were preceded by the Sumgait pogrom in 1988 where Armenian civilians were targeted, being killed in their homes and in the streets.
The civil violence in Sumgait and the atrocities committed there shocked the entire world. This anniversary reminds us of what a privilege it is to live in a country where diversity and inclusion make us strong and where various ethnic and religious communities can participate equally in our country's political life.
While commemorating the Armenian victims of these pogroms in Sumgait and Baku, we solemnly condemn all forms of racism, xenophobia and hatred.