July 6, 2014


WHEREAS, the year 2014 is the 150th anniversary of the Circassian Genocide, which was conceived by the Russian government and resulted in the extermination of 1,500,000 Circassian men, women, and children and the deportation of an additional 750,000 survivors; quickly emptying Northwest Caucasus, the land that the Circassians called home for nearly 5,000 years; and 

WHEREAS, Circassians were subjected to mass murder and famine at the hands of the Russian 
Government culminating with what is known by historians as the First Genocide of Modern European History, or the "Forgotten Genocide"; and 

WHEREAS, Russian Military General ANDREI ZASS stated, “"I am killing the Circassians as my 
heart pleases"; and 

WHEREAS, Russian General ALEKSEY YERMOLOV stated, “We need the Circassian lands, but we don't have any need of the Circassians themselves”; and 

WHEREAS, Circassians in Russia continue to endure daily acts of oppression, including the denial of their basic human rights; and 

WHEREAS, as a result of the Circassian Genocide 90 percent of all Circassians today live in exile with no right of return becoming the largest Diaspora in the world outside their ancestral homeland; and

WHEREAS, despite the abundance of overwhelming and convincing evidence, the government of Russia persists in denying the occurrence of the Circassian Genocide which in turn deprives the Circassian people of the right to their own history; and 

WHEREAS, the Circassian people have not received reparations for their losses; and 

WHEREAS, ancestral Circassian lands have not been returned to the Circassian people; and 

WHEREAS, by consistently remembering and forcefully condemning the atrocities committed against the Circassians , as well as other victims of similar heinous conduct, we guard against repetition of such acts of genocide; and 

WHEREAS, the Circassian-American people have a proud heritage and continue to make valuable contributions to the cultural, economic, and social development of New Jersey; and 

WHEREAS, Russia continues genocidal policy by not allowing 6 million Circassians to return to their historic homeland; denying Circassians a united republic; and 

WHEREAS, it is the Circassian society’s desire to rebuild social trust, repair a fractured justice system, and build a democratic system of governance in our homeland; 

NOW, THEREFORE, I, CHRISTOPHER P. VERGANO, Mayor of the Township of Wayne, 
do hereby proclaim the year 2014 the 150th anniversary of the Circassian Genocide in memory of the victims of this horrific event, and in honor of the survivors; and further proclaim that we, as citizens of the Township of Wayne, should strive to overcome intolerance and indifference through learning and remembrance. 

I have hereunto set my hand and cause the seal of the 
Township of Wayne to be affixed this 21ST
 day of May, 2014. 

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