Azeri protesters will end blockage of key road

Streaming HUBApril 29, 2023

Protesters who have blocked a road leading from Armenia to an ethnic Armenian region inside Azerbaijan for four months said on Friday they would end their actions as Azerbaijan set up a checkpoint at the start of the road.

The blockage of the so-called Lachin Corridor, which leads from the Armenian border to the Nagorno-Karabakh region, has disrupted food supplies to the region and raised tensions between Azerbaijan and Armenia, which fought a six-week war in 2020.

Nagorno-Karabakh, which had considerable autonomy under the Soviet Union, came under the control of ethnic Armenian forces backed by the Armenian Army in 1994 at the end of years of separatist fighting. Armenian forces also took control of large areas around Nagorno-Karabakh.

Russia claims to end ethnic tension in Nagorno-Karabakh, urges restraint

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Azeri protesters said they would end a blockade of a major road where they claim illegal mining and other ecological abuses have been committed by Armenians. (Fox News)

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Azerbaijan recaptured most of the surrounding territory and own pieces of Nagorno-Karabakh in the 2020 war that killed some 6,800 soldiers. Under the Russia-brokered ceasefire, transit along the Lachin Corridor was to continue under the guarantee of Russian peacekeepers.

The protesters blocking the road were protesting what they claimed to be illegal mining and other ecological abuses by Armenians in the area. After meeting with Azeri officials on Friday, they issued a statement saying they would suspend the protest.

Azerbaijan has accused Armenia of smuggling arms in Nagorno-Karabakh. It set up a post this week at the start of the Lachin Corridor, which Armenia says is a violation of the ceasefire.

There have been sporadic clashes amid tensions, including a clash in early April that left seven soldiers from both sides dead.

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