Azeris Mark Anniversary of Massacre

Tens of thousands of Azeris marching in Baku on Sunday to mark the 20th anniversary of the killings at Khojaly. Osman Karimov

BAKU, Azerbaijan — Tens of thousands of people marched through Azerbaijan's capital to commemorate the killing of hundreds of people during a war with Armenia over disputed territory.

President Ilham Aliyev led Sunday's march, which ended at a monument to the victims of the Khojaly massacre.

Officials said 60,000 people took part. Tens of thousands also turned out for rallies in Turkey, a close ally of Azerbaijan.

By Azerbaijan's count, 613 residents of Khojaly were killed on Feb. 26, 1992, after fleeing the town as it fell to Armenian troops.

Armenians have not denied the attack, but they insist that the death toll is exaggerated. Turkey and Azerbaijan have called for world recognition of the killings as a crime against humanity.

International rights groups have been uncertain about the exact death toll but condemn the killings and consider them the worst massacre of the war that broke out between the two neighbors as the Soviet Union fell apart.

Ethnic Armenian forces now control Nagorno-Karabakh, an enclave inside Azerbaijan, where about 30,000 people were killed and 1 million were displaced during the six-year conflict.

A cease-fire was declared in 1994, but violations have been frequent and diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflict have failed.

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