Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict flares up

World Today

Armenia’s parliament is set to vote on a bill that would recognize the independence of neighboring Azerbaijan’s breakaway Nagorno-Karabakh region. Azerbaijan has rejected this, blaming Armenia of trying to derail international peace talks. This follows years of animosity and fighting between the two countries and a recent flare-up in fighting.

CCTV’s Natalie Carney reports from Tbilisi, Georgia.

Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict flares up

Armenia's parliament is set to vote on a bill that would recognize the independence of neighboring Azerbaijan's breakaway Nagorno-Karabakh region. Azerbaijan has rejected this, blaming Armenia of trying to derail international peace talks. This follows years of animosity and fighting between the two countries and a recent flare-up in fighting. CCTV's Natalie Carney reports from Tbilisi, Georgia.

It is considered one of the world’s longest running territorial disputes.

Nagorno-Karabakh is a landlocked region physically located in southwest Azerbaijan, but its home to a majority ethnic Armenian population, who say they are defending their right to self-determination.

More than 20,000 people were killed during a 6-year long bloody war between Azerbaijan and Armenia. In 1994 a cease-fire was agreed upon, but no peace treaty was signed, leaving the area in limbo. In the two decades since, as many as 3,000 people are believed to have died in fighting between the two sides.

Last month renewed fighting marked the worst violence in 22 years, rattling the region.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan reiterated his country’s support for Azerbaijan, with whom they hold strong economic, religious, and cultural ties.

Russia, Turkey’s friend-gone-foe, has criticized Erdogan for making comments Moscow said instigates war. Russia has a military base in Armenia and has extended a $200 million loan to Armenia for weapons purchases, but it’s arms deals with Azerbaijan is 25 times that.

“This conflict demonstrated that Azerbaijan managed to gain some support in Russia as well,” Senior Fellow Georgian Foundation For Strategic and International Studies Nodar Kharshiladze said.

“I mean Russia’s support was very mild and very disappointing for Armenians.”

The Armenian government’s recognition of an independent Nagorno-Karabakh would do little to resolve the issue. The area is still considered under Azerbaijan’s sovereignty by the international community and the United Nations.

Meanwhile, neighboring Georgia has offered to mediate between the two countries in an effort to boost regional prosperity.