Reintegrate within Azerbaijan or become an outcast?
    Armenians in the grip of history

    ANALYTICS  26 September 2023 - 10:28

    Murad Abiyev

    Yesterday, September 25, an explosion hit a petrol station near the town of Khankendi. Many deaths and injuries were reported as a result of the incident. In this regard, in order to help the injured, an ambulance was initially sent along the Aghdam-Askaran-Khankendi road with anti-burn medical supplies, dressing materials, gloves, medicines (sprays, creams, painkillers, antibiotics, etc.) to treat 200 people. At the same time, the Armenian propaganda decided to use this emergency for its own purposes. Thus, calls are being circulated to organise an air corridor from Khankendi to Armenia allegedly to deliver the injured. Are they concerned about the victims or is this an attempt to smuggle out of Garabagh former junta leaders, such as Ruben Vardanyan? Time will show. In the meantime, let's discuss other issues.

    Last weekend, Khankendi saw a power outage. But no sooner had the Armenians added this "crime" to the indictment than the electricity supply was suddenly restored. It was a completely different light - from Azerbaijan. What an irony of fate! People who a week ago proudly refused to accept "food from the hands of a Turk" are now lighting their homes with "enemy" electricity.

    Meet the reintegration!

    The day before, the second meeting of representatives of the central authorities of Azerbaijan and the Armenians of Garabagh took place in Khojaly after the capitulation of the junta. It is important to note here that, contrary to the fake statements of Armenian propaganda made after the first such meeting in Yevlakh, the reintegration of the zone of temporary responsibility of the RPC was discussed with the Armenian delegation as a given fact and not as an offer that could be refused.

    As we can see, the first steps were aimed at solving immediate humanitarian problems. Food and fuel have been brought to Khankendi.

    Now the evacuation of Armenian citizens living in the Garabagh region of Azerbaijan is under way. It should be mentioned at once that Azerbaijan does not force anyone to leave its territory, except for the servicemen who have laid down their arms and their family members. The rest leave of their own free will. At the same time, Baku says that those who want to regain Azerbaijani citizenship and live under the laws of our country can stay or return.

    Whether they will return is still an open question. People are scared - and this is not an exaggeration. Many of you have probably seen the video where an elderly Armenian woman who left Garabagh tells a Russian journalist - "we expected the worst". This woman was not dramatising in any way. Ordinary Armenians are by no means pretending that they are scared. The simple fact is that for a long time, they have been the object of Armenian propaganda, saying that Azerbaijanis only dream of slaughtering them. This unpretentious propaganda fitted well with the narrative of the so-called "Armenian genocide" of 1915. Thus, the consciousness of Armenians, especially in Garabagh, is a multilayered cake in which one layer of Turkophobia has been overlaid on another for decades. This intimidation allowed mafia gangs to hold people hostage to maintain a grey zone that provided personal enrichment for criminal leaders, Yerevan politicians, and diaspora businessmen.

    Now that the Garabagh junta has hung out the white flag, people are left alone with their fears. That is why the Azerbaijani side is behaving decisively on the one hand and extremely delicately on the other. We avoid provocations towards our servicemen and inevitable incidents in such cases. This, on the one hand, allows us to avoid casualties and, on the other hand, prevents ill-wishers from accusing us of violent actions against civilians.

    So, Baku does not prevent Armenians from leaving. It is their right to choose where to live. I personally do not believe that Armenians under forty-five, i.e. those who have no experience with Azerbaijanis, will want to stay. Besides, not everyone will want to learn the Azerbaijani language. However, life in Armenia will not be easy since no one is waiting for them there. Moreover, if those who suffered from the earthquake of December 1988 have not yet been resettled from carriages and temporary houses, how and where will the Garabagh Armenians be resettled? And those who will leave for Russia will face rejection, which has been growing all these years against the background of unbridled behaviour of the Armenian community in the south of Russia - Krasnodar, Stavropol, and Rostov regions. After all, that is where a certain part of the Armenians who are leaving Garabagh and do not want to settle in Armenia will want to move to. This is the unenviable fate that short-sighted Armenian politicians in the late 80s and early 90s condemned their people to.

    Meanwhile, enmity between Yerevan and Garabagh Armenians is growing in Armenian society. Curses against Azerbaijanis and Russians are no longer a trend, giving way to mutual accusations between the two Armenian communities.

    "They didn't need Garabagh, Garabagh was just a means for plunder, a way to close people's eyes and mouths to their plunder," Taron Chakhoyan, deputy chief of staff of the Armenian Prime Minister's Office, wrote on his Facebook page, commenting on the actions of the Garabagh clan in Armenia.

    "The blood of Yerablur is your fault, Bako Sahakyan, yours and your generals, starting from Serzh Sargsyan to Robert Kocharyan," Garabagh "activist" Artur Osipyan said, addressing the heads of the illegal junta.

    "Leave me alone, I'm in my own country," a young mother, a resident of Yerevan, waved away annoying revanchists and Garabagh Armenians - participants of the protests, calling people on the streets to join them.

    Finally, the statement of the Speaker of the National Assembly of Armenia, Alen Simonyan, is very revealing. "We want to use this historic chance. Nobody needs eternal war. We are ready for it," he said on the air of Public TV. That's a good statement. Simonyan actually called the success of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces' anti-terrorist measures a chance.

    At the same time, the revanchists have not gone anywhere. Even now I have already come across someone's status that the current evacuation of Armenians to Armenia is nothing but regrouping... However, even if we abstract from unhealthy people and thoughts, we should not harbour excessive illusions. After all, it is no secret that the Armenian government is increasing its military budget. To throw off the Garabagh burden does not mean to discard the idea of hatred towards Turks forever. In this connection, perhaps, one of the main questions arises: how will the Garabagh adventure be described in Armenian history textbooks? A lot depends on this.


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