Nagorno-Karabakh Armenians leave their homes, rush to move to Armenia
Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh move to Armenia
According to official data published on the morning of September 26, “13,550 IDPs have already arrived in Armenia from Nagorno-Karabakh“. It is reported that the Armenian government is providing them with everything they need, those who have nowhere to live are provided with housing.
After the military actions in Nagorno-Karabakh on September 19-20, official Baku announced the restoration of its territorial integrity and the beginning of the process of “integration of the Armenian population”. However, traffic jams on the road to Armenia indicate that Armenians do not intend to stay. The displaced say they “see no possibility of peaceful coexistence within Azerbaijan.”
The evacuation began on Sunday, September 24. The first to move to Armenia were residents of Yekhtsayogh village of Shusha region. In order to avoid panic, the NK information headquarters announced that “all citizens willing to move will have such an opportunity”.
The first step is a needs assessment
Those arriving from NK first stop in the Armenian village of Kornidzor, where there is a humanitarian aid center. This is where people’s needs are registered and assessed. All state bodies are involved in the work and it is coordinated by the working group on crisis management in Nagorno-Karabakh.
“After the initial assessment of the needs of our compatriots, those who need housing go to Goris, where there is a coordination center dealing with the solution of housing and other priority problems,” said the head of the working group.
Karabakh residents moving to Armenia are provided with accommodation in hotels, guest houses and apartments from the housing fund of the nearest regions. For now, they are being settled in Syunik and Vayots Dzor regions.
To provide urgent assistance to the Armenians who left Nagorno-Karabakh, the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs launched an electronic platform for registration of primary needs https://e-soc.am. Social workers enter information there about the needs of those arriving.
The Ministry also registers the resources of international structures, proposals of non-governmental organizations and social initiatives that have announced their intention to support displaced persons from NK on the Social Assistance Map.
“The timing of the move is not set or limited.”
The NK Information Headquarters said people are not time-limited, but announced evacuation priorities:
“Population resettlement is being carried out in stages. First of all, the citizens who have been left homeless and are in a difficult situation as a result of military actions are evacuated to Armenia. We are talking about the citizens who are now crowded near the place of deployment of the Russian peacekeepers.”
The headquarters also informed MK residents that the local authorities will continue to fulfill their functions until the evacuation of all those willing to leave for Armenia is completed:
“In the current difficult situation, we call on the employees of the public administration system, health care and law enforcement agencies to continue to fulfill their professional duty for the sake of the safety and health of our compatriots.”
“Thousands of people are being evacuated as a result of Azerbaijan’s aggression”
Armenian Ambassador-at-Large Edmond Marukyan wrote in his microblog X that thousands of people are being evacuated to Armenia as a result of the September 19 hostilities:
“Azerbaijan has carried out a military aggression against the peaceful population of Nagorno-Karabakh, as a result of which not only hundreds of people have been killed and wounded, but also thousands of civilians have lost their homes, villages and communities.
They were forcibly evicted from their homes and after 6 days of sleeping in basements without food and water were not allowed to return to their homes, but evacuated from their ancestral land.”
Marukyan emphasized that the Russian peacekeeping mission deployed in Nagorno-Karabakh has not ensured peaceful life of the local population. He also criticized the position of the US, EU and other international structures:
“They failed to ensure the rights and security guarantees for the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh, despite the fact that they repeatedly stated during their mediation efforts that the rights and security of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh should be guaranteed within the framework of international mechanisms to allow them to live safely on their ancestral lands.”
“Safe passage must be provided.”
U.S. State Department spokesman Matthew Miller believes it is important that ethnic Armenians in NK can remain in their homes “in peace and dignity, with respect for their rights and safety.”
“And for those who wish to leave (NK) and return to (NK), there must be safe passage that is controlled by a neutral, independent third party,” he said.
According to Miller, Azerbaijan is responsible for protecting civilians and ensuring humane treatment of all. At the briefing, he told reporters that the US considers it important to deploy an international mission to NK to ensure the rights and safety of local residents:
“We have been calling for the deployment of such a mission for some time now and are working with our allies and partners on its realization.”
Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh move to Armenia