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CrisisWatch Azerbaijan

Unchanged Situation

Turbulence in second-largest city Ganja after attacker 3 July shot city’s unpopular mayor, seriously wounding him; police detained suspect identified as Russian national Yunis Safarov, later described by authorities as belonging to a radical Islamist group. Estimated 150-200 people 10 July joined protest in Ganja city centre, interpreted by some opposition politicians and observers as show of anger against corruption; two policemen stabbed and killed as they were confronting demonstrators. Next day govt launched security operation detaining more than 100 people and arresting more than 60; one suspect in death of police officer was shot dead 13 July. Interior ministry 9 July reported fourteen people jailed for online comments about shooting and about nationwide power blackout 3 July. President Aliyev 13 July made statement blaming events in Ganja on “religious radicals”; Iran dismissed and criticised speculation by Azerbaijani politicians of Islamic extremists with links to Iran. Azerbaijan took part in Russia-led military exercises “International Army Games” late July.

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Op-Ed / Europe & Central Asia

Rare Summit Meeting on Nagorno-Karabakh Peace

A rare meeting between the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan on 16 October 2017 could lead to a breakthrough. But the two countries have very different ideas on how to reconcile their competing narratives and goals in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

Originally published in JAM News

Also available in azərbaycan, Հայերեն, Русский and other languages

Nagorno-Karabakh: New Opening, or More Peril?

Fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan in early April killed up to 200 people, forcing international attention back to resolving the generation-old Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. The time has come for a decisive push for progress in the peace talks. Both sides are on an unprecedented war footing, and any new clashes risk dragging outside parties into a wider war.

Briefing / Europe & Central Asia

Armenia and Azerbaijan: A Season of Risks

Stronger international engagement is needed to help prevent the deadly conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan from escalating gravely at a time of internal political tensions in both.

Also available in Русский

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Zaur Shiriyev

Fellow, Europe