“We are Artsakh. We exist. Our existence is an undeniable fact, just like your own.
We have an ancient tradition. During baptism, a person receives a name and a small cross on a woven red and white thread. It is a symbol of spiritual birth, a reminder of the obligation to resist evil. Thus, by naming someone we recognize one’s existence.
Today, evil has come to our frontiers. It cuts our roots and destroys our churches, trampling on and denying the very fact of our existence. Evil has no home of its own – it roams in the lowlands of indifference, always ready to strike. Until we are recognized, evil will try to destroy us, certain that no one will notice.
Evil has no place in the highlands of Artsakh. From experience we know that if we retreat, it will fill the space we leave behind, and then, changing its disguise, will knock on everyone’s door. We have accepted the battle and will hold our ground.
Artsakh is Us. We exist. Call us by our name.
From the manifesto of the civil initiative «I RECOGNIZE ARTSAKH»
The international social movement “I Recognize Artsakh” has been launched in Armenia during these historic days of the struggle for freedom and independence of Artsakh.
While the Artsakh Defense Army fights the war, all those who stand for the right of the people for a peaceful life should unite to achieve international recognition of the republic. Only then, long-term legal basis for a peaceful life in Artsakh, Armenia and Azerbaijan will be created.
The symbol of the movement is the Narot of Artsakh, an interweaving of white, red and purple threads, where white embodies the purity of the invincible Spirit, red marks our will for Victory, purple signifies our Memory, and their interlacing is a symbol of our Unity.
Calling someone by name is an act of recognition. We want to convey to people all over the world an important message: any person, organization, community, city or state has the right to recognize Artsakh without waiting for the decisions of their governments and international institutions. To call Artsakh by name means to recognize Artsakh, to recognize the right of the people in Artsakh to live peacefully in their homeland, not fearing the future.
The unrecognized status of the Republic of Artsakh provokes aggression against its people, who thus remain outside a legal framework. For 26 years the people of Artsakh have been denied the right to a peaceful existence. One can argue endlessly about legal conundrums, but this is first and foremost a moral issue. In any society, isolation and denial of one’s name are forms of torture and humiliation. It is time to stop pretending that the people of Artsakh do not exist. Silence is tantamount to a collective death sentence.
The people of Artsakh are facing an evil that violates the basic human right to a peaceful life. Falsification of history and denial of the Armenian Genocide is evil, shelling of civilians is evil, destruction of churches is evil. A person who decides to recognize Artsakh takes a stand against evil.
Everyone has their own reasons to weave a Narot and declare: “I recognize Artsakh”. Thus, I express my position, my choice, a gesture of goodwill: “I recognize Artsakh because I don’t want a repetition of the Genocide,” – “I recognize Artsakh because I am against terrorism,” – “I recognize Artsakh because I cherish the memory of my ancestors ,” -” I recognize Artsakh because as a human being I am within my right to do so! ” -” I recognize Artsakh as I recognize myself!”
The support for Artsakh by the international community and the recognition of the republic by people, organizations and communities in different countries will strengthen the spirit of the Armenian people in the struggle for their rights.
This social movement will also facilitate the political and diplomatic process of recognition of the Republic of Artsakh.
Anyone can join the movement. Weave the Narot of Artsakh for yourself and your loved ones.