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CrisisWatch Armenia

Unchanged Situation

Tensions persisted with Azerbaijan, PM Pashinyan resigned ahead of June elections, and U.S. President Biden recognised 1915 Armenian genocide. PM Pashinyan 7 April asked Russian President Putin for help in releasing dozens of prisoners of war captured by Azerbaijan during and after the military escalation in Nagorno-Karabakh (NK) in late 2020. Govt next day said that it expected group of prisoners of war to be repatriated to its capital Yerevan from Azerbaijan’s capital Baku; transport plane however arrived empty, prompting authorities 9 April to accuse Azerbaijan of violating terms of Russian-brokered Nov 2020 agreement (see Nagorno-Karabakh). Azerbaijani President Aliyev 12 April opened new Military Trophy Park in Baku, displaying installations of Armenian trenches and soldiers in NK, prompting public outcry in Armenia. Meanwhile, PM Pashinyan 14 April told Parliament that govt was considering possible expansion of existing Russian military base in Gyumri town amid concern over attempts by Azerbaijan and Turkey to take over some parts of region; Armenian chief of general staff next day discussed expansion of Russian troops to Armenia’s south with Russian counterparts during visit to Moscow. Domestically, judge 6 April dropped criminal case against former President Robert Kocharyan and co-defendants over deadly crackdown on protesters in 2008; Constitutional Court found that basis on which they were prosecuted in Criminal Code was “invalid”. Pashinyan 25 April resigned as PM as part of preparations for elections anticipated for 20 June. U.S. President Joe Biden 24 April became first U.S. president to formally recognise 1915 Armenian genocide; Pashinyan said Biden “honoured the memory” of those who died.


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Reports & Briefings

In The News

13 Jul 2020
Many people would be very surprised if clashes at the Armenia-Azerbaijan border spiral out into war, but that doesn’t mean something cannot happen, say, in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone. OC Media

Olesya Vartanyan

Senior Analyst, South Caucasus
2 Aug 2018
The general public sees Mr. Kocharian as a person responsible for accelerating the political stagnation that led to economic decline and social problems in [Armenia]. Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty

Olesya Vartanyan

Senior Analyst, South Caucasus
15 Nov 2017
The [Armenian] government generally supports a deeper militarization of society. The reforms discussed plan to merge everyday life with military service – the so-called 'army-society' model. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

Olesya Vartanyan

Senior Analyst, South Caucasus

Latest Updates

De-escalating the New Nagorno-Karabakh War

Azerbaijan and Armenia are again at war over the breakaway Nagorno-Karabakh region. Russia and France may be best-positioned to broker a ceasefire, but would need to offer parties prospects of attaining goals through talks. It will be a hard sell.

Video: Preventing a Bloody Harvest on the Armenia-Azerbaijan State Border

The fresh violence in the Armenia-Azerbaijan state border now threatens the livelihoods of many facing the impossible choice of leaving their crops to rot or risking their lives gathering their produce for market.

Preventing a Bloody Harvest on the Armenia-Azerbaijan State Border

Fighting in July interrupted what had been a stretch of relative quiet on the Armenia-Azerbaijan border. The incidents underscored how quickly and unexpectedly this front can erupt. The two countries should take better advantage of a hotline created in 2018 to avoid dangerous misunderstandings.  

Also available in Русский

Qaralar: the Fears of an Azerbaijani Village on the Border with Armenia

Settlements in proximity to the trenches on the Armenia-Azerbaijan state border render civilians on both sides equally vulnerable.

Armenia and Azerbaijan: The Waters of Joghaz Reservoir

Water was once abundant in the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, thanks to a network of reservoirs and irrigation pipes, but today shortages are chronic.