Mosque in the Giyasli village (Giyasli Mosque) of Aghdam

The Giyasli Mosque was built in the Giyasli village of the Aghdam district of Azerbaijan in the eighteenth century during the Karabakh khanate. It takes its name from the village where it is located. It is considered that when it was constructed the Giyasli Mosque had two minarets, which was an architectural feature of that period of Karabakh. The resemblance with the mosques in Shusha and Aghdam cities confirms this assumption. “The large central arch element of the 18th century, as in other similar mosques, is specific to the Giyasli Mosque”.[1] The Mosque was registered as an architectural monument of local significance by the decision of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated August 2, 2001.

During the occupation of Aghdam by the Armenian Armed Forces in 1993, the mosque was set on fire by machine guns and burnt down. Shreds of evidence show that, later on, Armenians kept cattle and pigs in the Giyasli Mosque. Regarding this famous photographer, Reza Deghati writes that “The vandalism of cultural, spiritual and religious heritage is ununderstandable and unacceptable. I’ve witnessed it across different conflicts. These past few days, in Karabakh, I saw cemeteries sacked, houses burned, and mosques turned into barns… Before leaving the district the occupant took what they could and burned the mosque”.[2]

[1] “Victory of Azerbaijani Army put an end to Armenian savage: What do I see in Aghdam”, Apa, 22 December 2020.

[2] “Armenians burned mosques before leaving Aghdam”, Defence.Az, 30 November 2020.