Azerbaijan’s black-n-white history: January 1990
January 20 (1990) is marked as a bloody, dark date in Azerbaijan’s history. On that day in 1990, Soviet Union troops entered Azerbaijani capital of Baku at night to suppress the ongoing protests against Armenia’s aggressive actions and the population’s sovereignty demands.
The violent attack on Baku was carried out without preliminary declaration of state of emergency and ended in a massacre of civilians with the use of heavy military equipment against them. Over 130 civilians were killed and 700 were wounded as a result of Soviet troops’ actions. Among victims were people of various nationalities.
Being one of the tragic pages in Azerbaijan’s history the January 20 tragedy, which also became known as Black January, is considered as a cornerstone in unification of Azerbaijani people and rebirth of the Azerbaijan Republic.
A photo journalist of “Atmoda” newspaper (weekly, published Latvian SSR and Latvia in 1988-1992), Didzis Sedlenieks was in Baku, when the above mentioned events took place.
He made photos of what was going on in Baku at the time, however most of what he shot was confiscated, and he managed to save just one photo tape. Below are some of those photos.
For more on the subject, check out this gallery.