YEREVAN, May 12. / ARKA /. The California State Assembly, in an overwhelming bipartisan vote, called last week for U.S. recognition of the Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh , marking a major milestone in the growing American movement supporting the national and democratic aspirations of the citizens of this independent and historically Armenian country, reported the Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region (ANCA-WR).
The historic vote specifically voiced encouragement for Artsakh’s (Nagorno Karabagh) continuing efforts to develop as a free and independent nation, and formally called upon the President and Congress of the United States to support the self-determination and democratic independence of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. AJR 32 was adopted by a vote of 70 to 1, and will now move to the California State Senate for consideration. Earlier this week, AJR 32 was adopted by the State Assembly Rules Committee by a vote of 9-1.
"Today's overwhelming vote puts the California State Assembly on record in support of the people of Nagorno-Karabakh and reaffirms our unwavering commitment to freedom and self-determination for all peoples," noted Assembly Speaker John A. Perez.
AJR 32 lead author, Assemblymember Gatto introduced the resolution on the floor providing historical background; noting the importance of supporting the self-determination and independence of Artsakh. Co-Author Assemblymember Katcho Achadjian (R-CA), Assemblymembers Cheryl Brown (D-CA), Ian Calderon (D-CA), Tim Donnelly (R-CA) Adrin Nazarian (D-CA), and Scott Wilk (R-CA) joined Assemblymember Gatto in urging their colleagues to support the resolution.
"We worked so hard to make it move forward, and we are so proud today that the California State house stood with me in support of the people of Artsakh in their ongoing quest for freedom, democracy and independence," stated Assemblymember Gatto.
California is home to tens of thousands of Armenian-Americans who are refugees of pogroms against Armenians in Sumgait (1988), Kirovabad (1988), and Baku (1990), and the ethnic-cleansing of the Armenian population of Azerbaijan. Dozens of refugees from the region, many from the Shahumian district of Artsakh, were present for the historic vote.
Upon passage by the State Senate, California will join Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine and Louisiana in adopting legislation which supports the independence of Artsakh.-0-