Environ 120 000 Arméniens résidant dans le Haut-Karabakh redoutent d’être soumis à un nettoyage ethnique et prévoient de quitter la région pour se rendre en Arménie.

Les 120 000 Arméniens ethniques du Haut-Karabakh partiront pour l’Arménie car ils ne veulent pas vivre au sein de l’Azerbaïdjan et craignent d’être victimes de nettoyage ethnique, a déclaré ce dimanche 24 septembre la direction de l’enclave séparatiste.

The Armenian Prime Minister stated that the Armenians from Nagorno-Karabakh would likely leave the territory and that his country was ready to welcome them, following the defeat suffered by the Azerbaijani enclave in this conflict that dates back to the fall of the Soviet Union.

Le Haut-Karabakh est reconnu internationalement comme faisant partie de l’Azerbaïdjan mais échappe au contrôle de Bakou depuis l’effondrement de l’Union soviétique.

Le territoire est administré jusqu’à présent en partie par des autorités arméniennes dissidentes considérant la région comme leur patrie ancestrale.

The people of Armenian territory were forced to agree to a ceasefire on September 20th after a swift 24-hour operation led by the more powerful Azerbaijani army. Azerbaijan has promised to ensure their rights and integrate the region, but the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh are concerned about potential repression.

« I cannot reword »

« I cannot reword »

Sous escorte russe

The Armenian leaders of Nagorno-Karabakh have stated in a statement that those who have been left homeless since Azerbaijan’s military operation and wish to leave will be escorted to Armenia by Russian peacekeepers present in the enclave. David Babayan added that he does not yet know when the Armenians will take the Lachin corridor connecting them to Armenia, as Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan is facing calls for resignation for failing to save Nagorno-Karabakh. He also indicated that the process of collecting weapons from ethnic Armenian fighters is underway.

During a national speech, the Armenian Prime Minister stated that a portion of the humanitarian aid had reached the area, but the Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh were still at risk of « ethnic cleansing ».

« If genuine living conditions are not created for the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh in their homes, and effective mechanisms against ethnic cleansing are not established, it is increasingly likely that they will see expulsion from their homeland as the only solution. »

Azerbaijan has repeatedly denied any intention to harm Armenians. According to a transcript of his speech provided by the government, the Armenian Prime Minister added that « the responsibility for such a development in the events would lie entirely with Azerbaijan, which has pursued a policy of ethnic cleansing, and the Russian peacekeeping contingent » stationed there.

According to a statement quoted this time by the Russian news agency TASS, Nikol Pashinyan also stated that Armenia « will lovingly welcome our brothers and sisters from Nagorno-Karabakh ». The mass exodus of such a large number of people from Karabakh could also alter the delicate balance of power in this mountainous region of the South Caucasus, a patchwork of ethnicities crossed by oil and gas pipelines, and a theater of influence struggle between Russia, the United States, Turkey, and Iran.

L’Azerbaïdjan, à majorité musulmane, a dit que les Arméniens – de religion chrétienne – peuvent partir s’ils le souhaitent. Des évacuations pour raisons médicales depuis l’enclave séparatiste sont attendues ce dimanche 24 septembre. 

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