Baku speeding up measures to reintegrate Armenians of Garabagh region
    New reintegration portal comes online

    ANALYTICS  02 October 2023 - 15:48

    Mushvig Mehdiyev

    Following the recent successful counter-terrorism measures in the Garabagh region, the government of Azerbaijan has been throwing more weight behind its efforts to reintegrate the region’s Armenian residents.

    The collapse of the separatist regime in the country’s Garabagh region as a result of a one-day lightning anti-terror campaign fetched bigger opportunities to establish direct contact with the Armenian minority. Baku was quick to resume the talks for reintegration.

    The counter-terrorism measures ended in the capitulation of the separatists on September 20. On September 21, representatives of Garabagh’s Armenian minority travelled to the central Yevlakh district of Azerbaijan to sit for the next round of suspended talks.

    On September 25 and 28, Baku again hosted the delegates from Garabagh to facilitate the talks for reintegration. The vision of the Azerbaijani government in this regard was precisely delivered during the meetings. A special representative of the Azerbaijani president submitted the reintegration plans and additional programs for assisting the Armenian minority in rejoining the Azerbaijani society.

    Last week, a special government portal was launched to speed up the reintegration process. The online platform in four languages – Azerbaijani, Armenia, English, and Russian – enables voluntary registration for ethnic Armenians wishing to live under the patronage of Azerbaijan.

    Moreover, tens of tons of humanitarian aid, containing food, hygiene products, beddings, and medicaments have been supplied to the Garabagh Armenians by the Azerbaijani government.

    Assistant to the President of Azerbaijan, Hikmat Hajiyev, said although Baku could not justify the decision of ethnic Armenians to leave Garabagh, it could “understand and respect” that.

    "If they accept Azerbaijan citizenship, we will protect and ensure their rights and their security and we will establish a municipality system so that they can govern their affairs at a local level, and religious and cultural rights will be assured," Hajiyev told AFP.

    Earlier, President Ilham Aliyev said the Armenian population of Garabagh are citizens of Azerbaijan and despite the crimes and injustice against the people of Azerbaijan, Baku has never blamed the Armenian people for those inhumane actions.

    “A new historic chance has been created for ordinary people living in Garabagh. Take advantage of that chance. We are ready for this […] We propose this, and I hope that our proposal will be accepted. This proposal is based on logic, historical justice, international law and future development and is calculated for future growth,” Aliyev said in an address to the nation on September 20.

    Ethnic Armenians have been leaving Garabagh shortly after the anti-terror measures crumbled the separatist regime in the region. Despite Azerbaijan’s calls to stay and reintegrate, they have massively left for Armenia. Talking to the international and Azerbaijani media outlets, they confirmed their voluntary relocation with no forcible expulsion, intimidation or human rights violations by Azerbaijan.

    While the Armenian side has been reporting exaggerated figures about the number of migrating ethnic Armenians, the government of Azerbaijan has not yet provided relevant official data.

    The Azerbaijani presidency ordered the State Migration Service to register Armenian residents of Garabagh to ensure their sustainable reintegration into Azerbaijani society based on the guarantees of fundamental rights, including cultural, educational, religious, and municipal.


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