It will depend on the naive leaders of armenia whether they can prepare for it and recruit professionals or like the previous cronies claim that they are invincible. Specific criteria should be elaborated for the duration of that transition period, and the final decision of the International Court of Justice on the Application of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination should be one of them. Does due process prevail in civil and criminal matters? Given the absence of a deal, Russia will claim that Russian peacekeepers should stay in Nagorno Karabakh after November 2025 to prevent the resumption of hostilities. Are the peoples political choices free from domination by forces that are external to the political sphere, or by political forces that employ extrapolitical means? Do the people have the right to organize in different political parties or other competitive political groupings of their choice, and is the system free of undue obstacles to the rise and fall of these competing parties or groupings? In August, the Azerbaijani prosecutor general reported that 23 Azerbaijani civilians were killed and another 36 were injured by mines in areas that were previously under Armenian control.

Do Armenia and Azerbaijan move to peace or war? Electoral-code changes adopted in July 2019 for the 2020 elections shifted the parliament to a fully proportional system, eliminating individual constituencies. Mayilyan received 12 percent of votes in the second round even after calling on supporters not to cast a vote, to prevent the further spread of the COVID-19 in the region. Following the 2020 conflict, local media outlets continued to produce vibrant output, covering opposition rallies and government critics. The possible option could be to apply the idea of shared sovereignty in Nagorno Karabakh. If they prefer to leave, it is their choice.

Schools and universities are subject to political influence and pressure to avoid dissenting views on sensitive topics, particularly those related to the territorys status and security. Elections took place in 2020 in parallel with the presidential race.

Abuses included the use of cluster munitions, white phosphorous bombs, and other heavy weapons in attacks that failed to distinguish between military and civilian targets, including against residential areas in the main towns and villages.

The 2020 electoral campaign featured open and vigorous competition between existing and newly formed political parties. After the close of hostilities, a number of Armenian and Nagorno-Karabakh officials complained about poor relations between Yerevan and Stepanakert, which they claimed was a key reason for the defeat in fighting with Azerbaijan. Some 70,000 of those who fled for Armenia in 2020 returned by March 2021, though many returnees remain internally displaced within Nagorno-Karabakh. Global freedom statuses are calculated on a weighted scale. Score Change: The score improved from 2 to 3 because public assemblies were generally able to proceed without disruption from authorities during the year. Nevertheless, many domestic journalists continue to practice self-censorship, primarily on subjects related to security and the peace process. document.getElementById( "ak_js_1" ).setAttribute( "value", ( new Date() ).getTime() ); Dr. Benyamin Poghosyan is the founder and chairman of the Center for Political and Economic Strategic Studies.

Outspoken political dissidents have been subject to harassment by the authorities. The territorys population is mostly ethnic Armenians, and given its geographic and diplomatic isolation, it has been dependent on close political and economic ties with Armenia. However, closer examination of current trends allows for identifying several scenarios for the immediate future. Given the current trends in international and regional developments, the first scenario seems the most likely, while the third scenario remains a distant possibility. No electoral-code changes have occurred since the 2020 cease-fire and shift in territorial control. Does the government operate with openness and transparency? The president is directly elected for up to two five-year terms and is both head of state and head of government, with authority to appoint and dismiss cabinet members. Is the government or occupying power deliberately changing the ethnic composition of a country or territory so as to destroy a culture or tip the political balance in favor of another group? Washington, DC 20036. the future of Nagorno Karabakh remains foggy. The newly formed Miasnakan Hayrenik (United Motherland) party, led by opposition politician Samvel Babayan, won nine. Shortly before the vote, the TI affiliate refused to send observers, citing the spread of COVID-19 in the region. Armenia is unable to defend the post-2020 war borders of Nagorno Karabakh. There are few formal restrictions on political-party formation and membership, but the political landscape in past years has been constrained in practice. They may include establishing a free economic zone in Nagorno Karabakh and launching small-scale community-level economic projects benefiting both Armenians and Azerbaijanis. Azerbaijani forces prevented visits to Dadivank beginning in May. See all data, scores & information on this country or territory. Footage also circulated of Azerbaijani soldiers desecrating graveyards. The Harutyunyan-founded Free Motherland (Azat Hayrenik) party maintained its dominant legislative position, winning 16 seats. In 2020, the Armenian media outlet CivilNet opened a permanent office in Stepanakert and hired local reporters to cover developments in Nagorno-Karabakh. Yerevan has continued to provide subsidies and has financed programs that benefit Nagorno-Karabakh residents, however. Currently, experts and societies wonder what these developments mean for the future of the self-proclaimed Nagorno Karabakh Republic. The constitution calls for close cooperation with Armenia on political, economic, and military policy. Probably Azerbaijan would like to regulate the presence of Russian troops through a bilateral Russia-Azerbaijan agreement, thus kicking Armenia out of the process. Civil society groups also face competition from government-organized entities. In late May 2022, Armenia and Azerbaijan established national commissions for border delimitation and demarcation. Is there freedom for trade unions and similar professional or labor organizations? The weakening of Russia will trigger tectonic shifts in the security architecture of Eurasia. Among other changes, the number of parliamentary seats under the proportional system increased, and the vote threshold for representation decreased to 5 percent for political parties and 7 percent for electoral coalitions, allowing for broader political participation.

There were no reports of serious, undue pressure or attacks against candidates during the campaign. Discussions are underway, and different ideas have been put forward. In August, the Azerbaijani prosecutor general reported that 23 Azerbaijani civilians were killed and another 36 were injured by mines in areas that were previously under Armenian control. The possibility of supplementing Russian peacekeepers with international military observers with a UN Security Council mandate, similar to the UN Observer Mission in Georgia (UNOMIG), may be explored. Politics in Nagorno-Karabakh are heavily influenced by the threat of military aggression, which has influenced the territorys political and financial dependence on Armenia. In 2020, Stepanakert saw major election-related rallies, including those calling for the vote to be postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and decrying alleged electoral irregularities. Establishing a free economic zone and the simultaneous circulation of Armenian drams and Azerbaijani manats in Nagorno Karabakh may foster economic cooperation and reduce tensions. The latter will automatically put Azerbaijan against Russia and create significant bilateral tensions. Neither cultural autonomy nor a projection of the Aland Islands experience will work here. The religious freedom of other groups is limited in practice. Nagorno-Karabakhs human rights ombudsman reported that 52 ethnic Armenian civilians were killed by Azerbaijani attacks on the territory. Freedom of movement within Nagorno-Karabakh is hindered by its ambiguous legal and diplomatic status, the instability of the cease-fire, and the presence of land mines, which continue to cause deaths and injuries. The Armenian government funded the monitoring of Nagorno-Karabakhs 2020 elections by Transparency Internationals (TI) affiliate in Armenia and the Stepanakert office of the Yerevan-based Union of Informed Citizens.

Before the 2020 conflict, the population was almost entirely ethnic Armenian as a result of displacement during the war in the 1990s. The stations editorial policy has changed significantly since the political opening in Armenia in 2018, and it has in recent years hosted a greater plurality of opinion, notably during the intense campaign period before the 2020 elections. However, this practice has been halted due to the increased demand for housing, prompted by the displacement of residents from Azerbaijani-controlled areas. The War in Ukraine and the Future of the World Order, Scenarios for the Future of Nagorno Karabakh, Armenia to withdraw soldiers from Artsakh, Cindy Fitzgibbon becomes Boston's first female broadcast chief meteorologist, Camp is in session with a lifetime impact. Soon after the cease-fire, President Harutyunyan returned several controversial politicians, who left due to conflicts with Armenian prime minister Nikol Pashinyan, to senior posts.

Amnesty International reported instances where ethnic Armenian forces committed abuses against their counterparts during the conflict, including several instances of corpse mutilation and the death of a POW.

Are individuals able to exercise the right to own property and establish private businesses without undue interference from state or nonstate actors? A 2009 law banned religious activity by unregistered groups and proselytism by minority faiths and made it more difficult for minority groups to register. Tens of thousands of those who fled Nagorno-Karabakh for Armenia have returned, though returnees who lived in areas under Azerbaijani control have been unable or unwilling to return. In 2013, Dr. Poghosyan was a Distinguished Research Fellow at the US National Defense University College of International Security Affairs. Scenario 1: De jure Azerbaijan, de facto Russia. Services resumed when the Azerbaijani military took over the town during the 2020 conflict.

The elections saw a record number of presidential candidates and political parties competing for power. Azerbaijan will use this period to increase the number of Azerbaijanis in the territory of the former Nagorno Karabakh Autonomous Oblast (there are plans to bring 25-27,000 Azerbaijanis into Shushi and around 30,000 into the Hadrut region by 2030). And on it would go. In September, a court in Stepanakert instructed the government to disclose information on the loans, though the government apparently did not comply by years end. Are individuals free to express their personal views on political or other sensitive topics without fear of surveillance or retribution? His main rival, acting foreign minister Masis Mayilyan, was one of only two candidates who refused to participate in the televised debates. Ten political partiesalmost twice more than in the 2015 electionsparticipated, organizing into two blocs. However, a third of Nagorno-Karabakh and some adjacent land came under Azerbaijani control in 2020 under a cease-fire agreement that ended a weeks-long conflict that year. For more information, see the reportmethodologyandFAQ. Afghanistan Human Rights Coordination Mechanism, Emergency Assistance and Thematic Programs.

Few, if any, Armenians in Nagorno Karabakh will agree to live under the control of Azerbaijan. Are safeguards against official corruption strong and effective? Some opposition politicians have joined the territorial governments cabinet to monitor assistance programs aimed at displaced residents. Hai Tahd in the Heart of the Nations Capital: Meet the 2022 ANCA Summer Interns, Do Armenians have a future as an independent nation?

Officials practice favoritism in filling civil service positions. Is there academic freedom, and is the educational system free from extensive political indoctrination? The Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh, which also calls itself the Republic of Artsakh, has enjoyed de facto independence from Azerbaijan since a 1994 cease-fire agreement that ended roughly two years of open warfare, though its independence is not recognized by any UN member states. Tens of thousands of ethnic Armenian civilians consequently fled Nagorno-Karabakh, with many saying they felt that their lives would be at risk if they stayed. At the same time, the international community may support the development of institutional capacities of the region. Had it not been for Karekin Njteh we could have lost Syunik by now as well. More than 250 NGOs are registered in Nagorno-Karabakh, but most are inactive. After the cease-fire agreement was reached, local leaders asked Armenia-based and diaspora organizations to limit discussion on projects within the territory to avoid criticism from Baku. There are concerns that the Nagorno Karabakh conflict may be transformed into another area of Russia-West geopolitical confrontation, ending the 25 years of cooperation between Russia, the US and France on this issue. The likelihood of a new war after 2030 remains high. Some 70,000 people who fled to Armenia had returned to Nagorno-Karabakh as of March 2021, though many returnees who previously lived in areas that came under Azerbaijani control during the conflict have been unable or unwilling to return to those locations. Azerbaijani authorities ordered Armenian Apostolic clergy to provide lists of pilgrims to Dadivank in February 2021. The property rights of Azerbaijanis displaced in the 1990s and Armenians after the 2020 conflict have yet to be adequately addressed. So please stop dancing in front of the Russian embassy and wake up. Russian peacekeepers maintain checkpoints throughout the region and are present at the Lachin transit corridor between Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia; Russian peacekeepers also maintain close contact with Armenian and Azerbaijani military counterparts, escort residents, and mediate local disputes. Parties campaigned freely in towns and villages and participated in televised presentations and debates. In this scenario, the future of Nagorno Karabakh will remain in limbo until at least 2030. The Azerbaijani militarys 2020 operation, which was aimed at gaining control of Nagorno-Karabakh, ruptured a cease-fire that, while frequently violated, had mostly prevented large-scale violence since 1994. Azerbaijan will have two choices: to agree on the extension of the Russian peacekeepers mandate or demand their withdrawal. In accordance with the November 9, 2020, cease-fire statement, Azerbaijan gained control over seven adjacent territories and parts of Nagorno-Karabakh itself, with the new line of contact running near or within civilian-populated areas. Local observers, including those trained and supported by Armenias leading nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), said the vote was free and fair despite reports of administrative irregularities and verbal clashes at some polling stations. In this scenario, ultimately, Nagorno Karabakh may be transformed into a special administrative region jointly governed by Armenia and Azerbaijan. Many would be killed by the intolerant dictator Aliyev and his people.There were 300,000 Armenians in Azerbaijan 4o years ago, today there are none.

Do individuals enjoy freedom of movement, including the ability to change their place of residence, employment, or education? Was the current head of government or other chief national authority elected through free and fair elections? Local elites also have political influence, including over the selection of senior leaders.

Rights groups and journalists reported instances of civilians facing physical attack, detention, torture, and degrading treatment by Azerbaijani forces; the British Guardian newspaper reported on the beheading of two noncombatants by Azerbaijani forces, videos of which had been shared on social media.

Russian peacekeepers are able to review visa applications. As of now, this scenario seems quite unlikely, given the differences between perceptions of the sides.

Do various segments of the population (including ethnic, racial, religious, gender, LGBT+, and other relevant groups) have full political rights and electoral opportunities? During the conflict, the Azerbaijani army fully or partially destroyed a number of Armenian religious objects, notably Sourp Ghazanchetsots Cathedral and Kanach Zham, in the same town. As a gesture towards the international community, Baku may offer Nagorno Karabakh a light version of cultural autonomy, simultaneously claiming that the Azerbaijani population should enter Stepanakert to live there. Amendments passed in 2014 led to some improvements to the electoral code. The 150,000 Artsakhians know better than anyone that to live under ANY form of control by the Sunni Azerbaijanis is totally impossible for them, as it would lead to their painful ejection from Nagorno Karabakh. During the past decade, the leading political parties have tended to form broad coalitions and co-opt potential rivals, precluding genuine opposition. This prompted local opposition activists and groups to mobilize supporters to hold frequent protests. Violence and insecurity continued to affect life in Nagorno-Karabakh since the cease-fire took effect.

The main mosque in the town known as Shushi to Armenians and Shusha to Azerbaijanis was restored and reopened in 2019. However, closer examination of current trends allows for identifying several scenarios for the immediate future. Attacks on dual-use infrastructure, such as telecommunications and electricity facilities, damaged civilian sites such as churches, schools, and private businesses. Do individuals enjoy personal social freedoms, including choice of marriage partner and size of family, protection from domestic violence, and control over appearance? The constitution guarantees basic due process rights, but police and the courts do not always uphold them in practice. In March 2009, he joined the Institute for National Strategic Studies as a research Fellow and was appointed as INSS Deputy Director for research in November 2010. Do the freely elected head of government and national legislative representatives determine the policies of the government? The charter also recognizes the Armenian Apostolic Church as the national church of the Armenian people. From the Azerbaijani perspective, the growing numbers of Azerbaijanis and the decline of the Armenian population due to security reasons and an uncertain future will ultimately solve the Karabakh conflict in favor of Azerbaijan, even if Russian troops remain in Karabakh beyond 2030. Nevertheless, some of their local activists still participated in observation missions and in some cases continued cooperating with the NGOs after the elections. Opposition groups organized regular rallies to address a variety of concerns during the year; protesters called for the resignation of President Arayik Harutyunyan, voiced dissatisfaction with the Armenian government, and called for more transparency in government-backed loans to affiliated businesspeople. During the six weeks of fighting between September 17 and November 9, 2020, human rights groups as well local and international journalists documented attacks or evidence of attacks against the ethnic Armenian civilian population, as well as atrocities against ethnic Armenian soldiers. Men and women have equal legal rights with respect to marriage and divorce, though the constitution defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman, precluding same-sex marriage. Many labor disputes are resolved through personal connections and family links before they reach local courts. The ability of locally elected officials to set and implement government policies is limited in practice by security threats along the line of contact between Nagorno-Karabakh and Azerbaijani forces, warnings from Baku, and the dominant role played by the Armenian government. Putin the pig will die and aliyev will be replaced at some point by another aliyev. In contrast to past years, few senior Armenian officials have traveled to Nagorno-Karabakh during 2021, allegedly to avoid open attacks from local residents or possible problems with the Azerbaijani government. Two leading presidential candidates stood in open opposition to the regions previous leadership. Five of the 14 presidential candidates ran as independents.

The internet penetration rate is low and has been slow to increase. The results of the 2020 conflict provoked widespread discontent among residents who blamed current and former leaders of Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia. The most recent presidential election took place in March and April 2020, several months before Azerbaijani forces launched an attack on the territory. Since February 2021, a variety of groups organized marches; among other things, participants called for the resignation of President Harutyunyan, voiced dissatisfaction with the government in Yerevan, and called for more transparency in government-backed loans.
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