[24-26 February, 1988]
Excerpt from the main speech delivered by one of the organizers during the massive demonstrations in Yerevan
I am waging this struggle in the name of justice, in the name of the motherland, and in the name of the inseparable Armenian Mountainous Karabagh. I swear to my people and the people of the world, that I shall continue my struggle until such time when the Mountainous Karabagh Autonomous Region is once and for all rejoined to Armenia. I swear [crowd repeating], I swear [crowd repeating], I swear [crowd repeating]. I swear that I shall conduct this struggle in accordance with my socialist rights and with an exceptional respect for law and order. I shall not succumb to the provocations by the Islamists, and shall act in the manner worthy of a soviet citizen. And may I be damned by my own people, if I break this covenant.
Segments of speech by historian Bagrat Ulubabian, at Yerevan demonstrations on February 26, 1988. Dr. Prof. Ulubabian was born in Karabagh and was exiled from the region for his scholarly and preservation work
Dear countrymen, my Armenian people: as people who have been subjected to constant misfortunes throughout history,… you have come to defend your right in this era of restructuring and democratization;
Mountainous Karabagh was taken away from Armenia by Stalin’s criminal hands. Since 1920, the people of Armenia and the residents of Karabagh have requested the return of the region to Armenia.
Banners and slogans used during demonstrations (Photos of M. S. Gorbachev and the red-blue-red flag of Soviet Armenia were also displayed)
“One nation, one republic”
“There is no brotherhood without justice”
“Reestablish historic justice”
“Perestroika is not extremism”
“Moscow! Respond to our just demands”
“Vote of no confidence for the government of Armenia”
“Karabagh to Armenia”
“Armenians! Unite, and Take Karabagh”
“The Catholicos has crucified our faith”
[From videotape filmed by the committee organizing the demonstration. Zoryan Institute Archives]
The Karabagh File, Documents and Facts, 1918-1988, First Edition, Cambridge Toronto 1988, by the ZORYAN INSTITUTE, edited by: Gerard J. LIBARIDIAN, pp. 92-93.