Azerbaijan Takes Over Last Nagorno-Karabakh District Handed Over by Armenia

Azerbaijani troops have entered the Lachin District on Dec. 1, the last of the remaining areas in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh handed over by Armenia under a peace deal.

Azerbaijani troops have entered the Lachin District on Dec. 1, the last of the remaining areas in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh handed over by Armenia under a peace deal.

The defense ministry of Azerbaijan released a video of military trucks moving into the district overnight with one truck waving the Azerbaijani flag, taking over the last of the three regions surrendered by Armenia under the Russian-brokered peace deal signed on Nov. 9 that ended six weeks of fighting.

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev celebrated the taking over in a televised address and called it “a new era.”

“We won a victory on the battlefield and in the political arena, and that victory opens a new era for our country. It will be an era of development, security and progress,” Aliyev said.

“We’ve driven the enemy out of our lands. We’ve restored our territorial integrity. We’ve ended the occupation,” Aliyev also said.

Under the peace deal, around 2,000 Russian peacekeepers, along with military vehicles, have been deployed along the Lachin corridor that connects the city of Khankendi and Armenia to ensure safe transit.

Officials from Russia and Turkey, a close ally of Azerbaijan, have also agreed on Dec. 1 to establish a joint peacekeeping center to monitor the implementation of the peace deal.

Armenia ceded Kalbajar last Nov. 25 and Agdam last Nov. 20.

Nagorno-Karabakh is officially recognized as part of Azerbaijan, however, it has been occupied by ethnic Armenians for years. Conflict broke out over the territory last September.


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