Incident on Lachin road unsettles Karabakh Armenians

The territory of Nagorno-Karabakh is connected to Armenia through a road in Lachin. As a result of the trilateral agreement of 10 November 2020, which brought to an end the 2nd Karabakh War, a new road has been built which bypasses the town of Lachin. This new "Lachin Corridor" is under the control of the Russian military contingent that deployed following the signing of the trialteral declaration.

On Saturday (3 December), some Azerbaijani officials from the Ministry of Environmental Protection turned up at the Russian checkpoint requesting an inspection of an area where they say natural resources were being exploited without the permission of the Azerbaijani government. There was a somewhat chaotic moment during which traffic across the road stopped. This lasted for about three hours, by which time the Azerbaijanis had a meeting with the Russian military and left.

Such incidents are not unknown in the South Caucasus. People often close roads as a sign of protest against this or that. It usually causes some inconvenience to drivers, but not much else. But a disruption in the flow of traffic through the Lachin corridor can be highly sensitive, as was seen on Saturday. The incident unsettled Karabakh Armenians, who, it seems, thought it was the start of a blockade. On social media alarming messages were shared.. Eventually everything finished before it had hardly started, but the incident is reflective of the tense situation.

source: with agencies
photo: The new road connecting Stepanakert to Armenia (archive picture)