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“All human beings are born free and equal

in dignity and rights.”

- Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Safeguarding the People of Nagorno-Karabakh

Wednesday, June 21, 2023 - 2:15pm
2360 Rayburn House Office Building


Please join the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission for a hearing on safeguarding the people of Nagorno-Karabakh as risks of renewed violence in and around the enclave increase.

Two and a half years after a bloody six-week war pushed Armenian forces out of Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions of Azerbaijan, tensions are again escalating. A blockade of the Lachin corridor to Nagorno-Karabakh by Azerbaijani-backed activists has entered its 7th month, and on April 23 Azerbaijan opened a military checkpoint on the corridor that is widely viewed as inconsistent with the provisions of the 2020 ceasefire agreement that ended the last war.  A number of international efforts are underway to mitigate the risk of a new full-blown war, including by officials at the U.S. State Department. One major issue is what is required to adequately protect the rights and safety of ethnic Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh, where Azerbaijan seeks to assert control.

This hearing will examine the measures required to adequately safeguard, during this period of blockade and negotiation, a vulnerable ethnic population, and offer recommendations for U.S. policy.

This hearing will be open to Members of Congress, congressional staff, the interested public, and the media. The hearing will be livestreamed via the Commission website and will also be available for viewing on channel 53 of the House Digital Channel service. For any questions, please contact Mark Milosch (for Co-Chair Smith) or Kimberly Stanton (for Co-Chair McGovern). 

Hosted by:

Christopher H. Smith
Member of Congress
Co-Chair, TLHRC
James P. McGovern
Member of Congress
Co-Chair, TLHRC

Opening Remarks


Panel I          

  • Ambassador Sam Brownback
    Written Remarks
  • Michael Rubin, Senior Fellow, American Enterprise Institute
    Written Remarks
  • David Phillips, Director, Peace-Building and Human Rights Program, Institute for the Study of Human Rights, Columbia University
    Written Remarks
  • John M. Evans, Former U.S. Ambassador to Armenia, Department of State
    Written Remarks


Submitted for the Record




118th Congress