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On November 30th, Azerbaijan’s armed forces entered the Lachin district, as the deadline for Armenia to vacate it ran out.
“According to the trilateral statement signed by the presidents of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Russian Federation and the prime minister of the Republic of Armenia, units of the Azerbaijan Army entered the Lachin region on Dec. 01,” the Azerbaijan Defense Ministry said.
Azerbaijan also apparently found a way to deploy some Turkish troops to Nagorno-Karabakh, since the peace deal didn’t include any Turkish peacekeepers, only Russian ones.
The Turkish Armed Forces’ specialists on the disposal of mines and improvised explosive devices have begun to provide assistance to the Azerbaijan Army in liberated from occupation territories.
Turkish military specialists will carry out work on demining and clearing these areas from explosive devices, as well as organize training sessions for our engineering units.
Artsakh Republic President Arayik Harutyunyan gave some words of encouragement for the citizens.
“I urge you to unite and get out of this situation with joint efforts. President of Artsakh. In this extremely difficult period for our Motherland, I have started political consultations with a wide range of political and public circles”, Harutyunyan said.
There is some controversy regarding the settlement of Berdzor. It is unknown if Azerbaijan’s troops will enter it or not.
The Lachin corridor, linking Armenia with Artsakh, runs through Berdzor, which in turn is located in the Kashatagh (the Artsakh name of Lachin) province – which has come under Azeri control under the terms of the Karabakh armistice. But the fate of the town remains vague.
According to the mayor, the Russian peacekeepers told them yesterday that they have to lower the flag of Artsakh, and that the flag of neither side should be raised there.
“Nevertheless the Russian peacekeepers didn’t specify whether or not the Azeri armed forces would enter Berdzor. It’s possible that women and children have left the town due to safety concerns, but many have stayed. Regarding the rumors alleging that only 200 residents should remain in the town as service staff for the peacekeepers – I don’t have any information on this. Anyhow, right now the number of residents who stayed in Berdzor is a lot more than 200. I myself am in Berdzor,” the mayor said.
The Russian peacekeepers are now stationed in Berdzor, while the local residents are waiting for further developments.
The situation is stable with refugees safely passing through the Lachin corridor, and there being no escalations.
A video was released showing Russian peacekeepers guarantee safe passage through Berdzor.
Armenian Minister of Defense Vagharshak Harutyunyan received US Ambassador to Armenia Lynne Tracy.
At the request of the Ambassador, the Minister presented the implementation of the agreements reached after the cessation of hostilities. The issue of returning the captives, finding the missing and exchanging the bodies of killed was pointed out as a priority. The possibilities of giving a new impetus to the Armenian-American cooperation in the field of defense were also discussed.
In Armenia, pressure on Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan appears to be mounting, as the Armenian President is also calling for early elections.
Armenian President Armen Sarkissian spoke at a meeting with representatives of the Armenian community of Russia during his private trip to Moscow.
The main things he said are the following:
- Armenia can get out of the post – war crisis in Karabakh by working together, through early elections.
- Emotions are now filling the hearts of not only the residents of Artsakh and Armenia, but of Armenians all over the world.
- Armenians need to stop dividing each other into “black and white”, learn from mistakes and create a country that everyone will be proud of, as well as an army that will win.
- In any country where such a tragedy has occurred, the government must go.
- Armenia needs early elections, and before that-the formation of a government of popular consent.
- The Constitution of Armenia did not create a system of checks and balances for the balance of power.
- Reconstruction should be done together, with the support of friends and allies, primarily Russia.
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