Azeris Wrestle Over Return to Abandoned Towns, Decades After First Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict With Armenia

AGDAM, Azerbaijan—Some 30 years on from the war that noticed Armenian forces drive hundreds of

AGDAM, Azerbaijan—Some 30 years on from the war that noticed Armenian forces drive hundreds of thousands of Azeris from their homes in and all-around the conflict-torn enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh, a lot of hope they can soon return following Azerbaijan regained significantly of the encompassing spot in a counteroffensive final tumble.

But for Sayali Pashayeva, and other people like her, that dream is clouded by queries such as the place they would dwell in the rubble-strewn border territories, and irrespective of whether they could realistically carve out a new livelihood upon their return.

“I thank God for allowing for me the possibility of returning to die on my have land,” stated Mrs. Pashayeva, seventy four years outdated, on her very first stop by back again to Agdam, the moment household to her household and 40,000 other people. Her son and daughter unfurled a pink rug from the trunk, a present for the nearby mosque, the only building left standing here, about 3½ miles from the border with Nagorno-Karabakh, nonetheless formally less than the management of ethnic-Armenians. The money there, Stepanakert, is monitored by Russian peacekeepers.

“For 30 years, we have waited for this minute,” Mrs. Pashayeva’s son, Alastun Pashayev, 45, stated. Azerbaijan secured management Agdam and many other areas in and all-around the disputed enclave for the duration of a bloody 6-7 days struggle in advance of Russia brokered a stop-hearth in November.

Really returning will not be quick. Mr. Pashayev says he is familiar with his $one hundred thirty five-a-thirty day period in disability payments and pension paid to displaced people will not be more than enough to reclaim the lifestyle he lost in Agdam a few decades ago, when he was nonetheless a youngster.