Cummings Foundation Grant Recipient

ATROCITIES, GENOCIDE, and the DUTY to PREVENT and to PUNISH UNDER INTERNATIONAL LAW: The Situation of Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh ~ Tuesday, October 10, 2023 ~ In Person/Virtual

Hannah Garry Jewish World Watch Juan Méndez NAASR Promise Armenian Institute at UCLA Promise Institute for Human Rights at UCLA Sheila Paylan Taner Akcam Thomas Becker UCLA Armenian Students Association UCLA Initiative to Study Hate UCLA Luskin Center for History and Policy University Network for Human Rights

Tuesday, October 10, 2023, at 7:00-9:30pm Pacific / 10:00-11:30pm Eastern

In-Person (including reception) at the UCLA Engineering VI (Engineering Building 6), 404 Westwood Plaza UCLA Mong Learning Center Auditorium Los Angeles, CA. Registration is required and free.

Visitor parking available at UCLA Parking Structure 8.

Online Event Registration for the virtual event is required and free.

Please note that registration for both the In Person and Online Events are required and free.

This event is a co-production of the Promise Institute for Human Rights at UCLA School of Law and The Promise Armenian Institute at UCLA.

Dr. Taner Akçam, Inaugural Director, Armenian Genocide Research Program of The Promise Armenian Institute at UCLA

Professor Thomas Becker, Legal & Policy Director, The University Network for Human Rights, Columbia Law School & Wesleyan University, author of briefing "The Tip of the Iceberg" on the Lachin Corridor blockade

Professor Juan Méndez, American University Washington College of Law, first UN Special Advisor on Prevention of Genocide, author of a "Preliminary Opinion" on the crisis in Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh and the need to prevent atrocity crimes.

Sheila Paylan, International law, human rights and gender expert; Director, Armenian Women’s Bar Association Board of Directors

Professor Hannah Garry, Executive Director, Promise Institute for Human Rights, signatory to Submission to UN Special Adviser on Prevention of Genocide, Sept. 5, 2023

Armenians have suffered discrimination and persecution at the hands of Azerbaijan—in Azerbaijan, Armenia and in Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh—for decades. In December 2022, Azerbaijan began its restrictions and eventual full blockade of the Lachin Corridor, the only road connecting the 120,000 ethnic Armenians in the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh within the borders of Azerbaijan to Armenia proper. As of this writing, for nearly 300 days, the population of Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh, 25% of whom are children, have been deprived of life-saving necessities such as food, medicines and fuel, resulting in starvation and death. More recently, even the International Committee of the Red Cross and other humanitarian aid organizations were prevented from accessing the population and, all the while, Azerbaijani officials have employed rhetoric normalizing hatred against ethnic Armenians while weaponizing starvation leading to death or forcible displacement from Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh.

Azerbaijan's aggression with respect to the Lachin Corridor over the past year is not isolated and points to a pattern and practice of ethnic cleansing that has gone unchecked for years. Indeed, on Tuesday, September 19, 2023, Azerbaijan launched a military operation against the already-suffering people of Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh, with hundreds of deaths and injuries within the first 24 hours of the attack. This tragic situation became an overt initiation of wholesale, violent ethnic cleansing, and while ceasefire agreements may be in place, threats to the safety and security of the ethnic Armenians in this region continue.

Looking at the situation with respect to attacks against ethnic Armenians as a result of the Lachin Corridor blockade, and recent active military attacks in Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh and in Armenia generally, this panel will explore the following key questions drawing from action taken thus far by States and international actors (or not):

What conditions trigger the duty to prevent atrocities, including genocide?
Once triggered, what is the scope of that duty, and what tools, both national and international, can help to identify these obligations as well as lawful steps for addressing a genocidal situation.

Armenian Students' Association at UCLA
Jewish World Watch
Promise Armenian Institute at UCLA (PAI)
Promise Institute for Human Rights at UCLA School of Law
UCLA Initiative to Study Hate
UCLA Luskin Center for History and Policy
University Network for Human Rights
National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR)

Click here for the flyer.

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