COMMEMORATION OF THE AZERBAIJAN OIL ACADEMY MASSACRE AND LAYING OF FLOWERS AT THE EMBASSY OF AZERBAIJAN IN WASHINGTON D.C. BY THE LOCAL AZERBAIJANI-AMERICAN COMMUNITY
On April 30, 2009, a great tragedy has occurred in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan, at the Oil Academy, one of the top universities in the country. A gunman or perhaps a group of gunmen – an investigation is ongoing and USAN hopes all those involved will be brought to justice -- have gone on a shooting rampage, killing 12 and wounding another 12 innocent civilians – students, professors and staff of the prestigious education institution.
The Azerbaijani-American community, as well as all of the Azerbaijanis worldwide, have been greatly saddened and incensed by the tragic loss of life of innocent people, along whom was one family member of an Azerbaijani-American. May all victims rest in peace!
In keeping with traditional Azerbaijani traditions and culture, on the occasion of the seventh day of the tragedy and the first Thursday of the mourning for the victims of Baku Oil Academy, a large group of Azerbaijani-Americans, along which were USAN Board Directors and members, made a visit to the Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan in Washington, D.C., to pay their respects to the victims, express condolences to the Embassy and people of Azerbaijan, and to send the condolences from Americans of all ethnic origin to the Azerbaijani nation.
The Azerbaijani-Americans brought with them red carnations (a customary flower for tragic events), candles and photos of the slain victims to organize a vigil in the embassy premises (see enclosed photos). The commemoration took place between 5pm and 5:30 pm at the Azerbaijan Embassy at the 2741 34th Street N.W.
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The U.S. Azeris Network (USAN) <http://www.usazeris.org/> is a registered non-profit, non-partisan, non-sectarian genuine grassroots advocacy and voter education network that is facilitating political activism and efforts by the Azerbaijani-Americans and other Turkic-Americans and their associations, organizations, councils, conferences, and other formal, semi-formal and informal groups, on federal, state and local levels. USAN is the first nationwide grassroots organization uniting Azerbaijani-Americans, being created by the grassroots, for the grassroots.