Tensions between Armenia and Azerbaijan remain in the Nagorno-Karabaj Region

Last 13th of September a new worsening of the armed tensions between Armenia and Azerbaijan took place in the area of the Nagorno-Karabaj – a region officially belonging to Azerbaijan but counting with an Armenian majority, as well as a very strong self-determination movement. The confrontation caused several casualties from both sides and ment the breach of the ceasefire that had been established in 2020. Moreover, it was produced in the context of a conflict which has been present in the region for the past several decades. In fact, the beginning of the tensions between both countries began in 1918, when both proclaimed their independence.

However, it was not until the disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1988 that the first open war was declared in the Karabaj region; the regional government carried out a referendum to begin the annexation to Armenia. This first war lasted until 1994, when both parties agreed on establishing a ceasefire. Still, tensions have remained between both countries; several attacks took place until 2020, when hostilities rised again and the second war of the region started. This time, Russia’s mediator role allowed the conflict to cease with another ceasefire after several days.

Yet again, in spite of the fragile ceasefire, tensions are still visible in the region of Nagorno-Karabaj. The Prime Minister of Armenia, Nikol Pashinián, denounced last Sunday the execution of four war prisoners on behalf of the Azerbaijani government, based on a video that was published on social media. Other people have also denounced the video, including Armenian ombudswoman Kristine Grigoryan or the EU representative for the South Caucasus Toivo Klaar, who asked for an investigation of the images. 

This last escalation of tensions between the two countries comes in a greatly unstable moment for Russia – before a very important mediator of the conflict in favour of Armenia- and its area of influence due to the war with Ukraine. Even if Armenia has unsuccessfully tried to ask for help to the CSTO (Collective Security Treaty Organization) – an euroasiatic military alliance led by Russia -, the EU and the US have shown an increasing interest in the conflict with the objective of shaping the dialogue between the confronted parties. Accordingly, it is expected that representatives of both countries will meet in the next European Political Community Summit that will take place in Prague in a few days.

Read the complete article in El País

For further information about the conflict visit BBC News Mundo.