Canada Nagorno-Karabakh: decisive battle for control of the Lachine corridor

03:15  28 october  2020
03:15  28 october  2020 Source:   rfi.fr

War between Armenia and Azerbaijan: A second attempt has apparently failed.

 War between Armenia and Azerbaijan: A second attempt has apparently failed. Ceasefire - the two countries already promised this last week. Even so, there were repeated reports of attacks. © dpa An Azerbaijani soldier calms a man between the rubble of a house that was destroyed in a bombardment by the Armenian artillery. A second attempt has apparently failed. In the conflict over the South Caucasus region of Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenia and Azerbaijan have made another attempt to cease fire. A "humanitarian ceasefire" should come into force on Sunday night.

Without genuine diplomatic progress, a ceasefire may merely give both sides a breather as they prepare for a more intense round of fighting focusing on the so-called Lachin Corridor , which contains the only major highway connecting the de-facto Nagorno - Karabakh Republic to Armenia.

The 2020 Nagorno - Karabakh conflict is an ongoing armed conflict between Azerbaijan, supported by Turkey, and the self-proclaimed Republic of Artsakh, supported by Armenia

La fumée monte lors des combats entre les forces arméniennes et azerbaïdjanaises dans les montagnes du Haut-Karabakh, le 23 octobre 2020. © AP Photo Smoke rises during the fighting between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces in the Nagorno-Karabakh mountains on October 23, 2020.

In the conflict of Nagorno-Karabakh, the Azerbaijani forces continue their advance in the conquest of this province which they had lost at the time of the fall of the USSR. After a month of fighting to the day, a decisive battle seems to be beginning for the control of the Latchin corridor, which in the event of victory for the Azerbaijani forces would allow them to completely isolate Nagorno-Karabakh itself from Armenia. .

With our correspondent in Yerevan, Régis Genté

Armenia: the city of Goris, refuge for many displaced people from Nagorno-Karabakh

 Armenia: the city of Goris, refuge for many displaced people from Nagorno-Karabakh © Screen capture France 24 Residents of Nagorno-Karabakh who took refuge in Goris, Armenia, to flee the fighting, on October 21, 2020. Many families fled the fighting in Nagorno-Karabakh, a breakaway region of Azerbaijan populated mostly by Armenians, to find refuge in Goris, Armenia. The city's hotels being saturated, a municipal crèche welcomes the latest arrivals.

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Nagorno - Karabakh separatists said one Armenian woman and a child were killed, while Baku said that an Azerbaijani family of five died in shelling launched by Armenian separatists. “We are a step away from a large-scale war,” Olesya Vartanyan of the International Crisis Group told AFP.

It is a decisive battle that begins. For the past week, Azerbaijani forces have conquered the southern flank of Nagorno-Karabakh, the entire valley that runs along the Araxe River and serves as the border with Iran.

Artillery combined with dozens of attack drones gave Baku a string of victories. Attacking the mountainous parts that form the bulk of Nagorno-Karabakh territory is a different story. Hence the choice of the Azerbaijani army to ascend from the southern districts to the Lachin corridor, now the only artery that allows Armenia to still supply Nagorno-Karabakh with men and weapons.

To read also: Nagorno-Karabakh: "We are witnessing the last stages of this war"

The other road which connects Armenia to Karabakh, the one which passes through the district of Kelbadjar, has been made impassable by the Azerbaijani artillery and air force.

The conflict therefore seems to be moving towards a possible end. The one where Azerbaijan would isolate Karabakh from Armenia and put the secessionist province under siege.

But nothing is written yet. The Armenian side is determined not to let the Lachin Corridor and, following it, the city of Shushi, designated by Ajerbaijani President Ilham Aliev as a top priority for his troops, be taken over.

To listen and to read also: Ilham Aliev, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan

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