Nagorno-Karabakh: the exodus

Nagorno Karabakh map Nagorno Karabakh map © Unknown author via unsplash

The inexorable exodus of ethnic Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh as a consequence of the recent attacks by Azerbaijani forces

On 19 September 2023, Azerbaijan launched yet another military offensive against the Nagorno-Karabakh region (which had been disputed between Armenia and Azerbaijan for years), forcing the military leaders to call a ceasefire.
As a result, most of the ethnic Armenian civilians were forced to leave their land and reach Armenia as displaced persons.
On that date, almost all of the 120,000 ethnic Armenians living in the region fled to Armenia for fear of persecution and reprisals, and witnessed several incidents of violence by Azerbaijani troops.

As reported by the Balkans and Caucasus Observatory,  after 19 September 2023, Karabakh emptied in a few days. Armenian displaced persons from Karabakh are distributed in various regions of Armenia. The first wave reached the area surrounding Karabakh and then spread to the entire Armenian national territory. Initially, it was believed that the residents of Nagorno Karabakh numbered 120,000, but a lower number, around 100,600 people, has since been confirmed.
According to Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan,, almost all the displaced people have stayed in Armenia and only three thousand have left Armenia to go abroad.
Pashinyan himself urged the Karabakis not to emigrate and to stay in Armenia, where they can register and go to school. Within a few days after the exodus, 40% of the students were already attending Armenian schools.
Instead, the seriously wounded who could not be admitted to national hospitals were taken abroad.

According to data reported by the Balkans and Caucasus Observatory, it is estimated that there are now a few hundred Armenians left in the territory now controlled by Baku, mostly people unable to leave the area due to disability or old age. They are being assisted by the Red Cross.
Although there is no more shooting, the Karabakh war continues to claim victims. On 13 October, one Azerbaijani died and another was wounded. The Observatory reported a total number of 333 civilian and military victims since the end of the conflict.
Karabakh remains an extremely dangerous area.
In October, ANAMA, the Azerbaijani demining agency, showed photos of mines and explosives that had been placed in various places by Armenian secessionists.


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