War in Nagorno-Karabakh
More than half of the civilian population displaced (Press Release)
Now that all efforts to negotiate a ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh have failed, the Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) demands that the situation should be monitored by international organizations – especially because of the widespread use of prohibited weapons such as cluster bombs and phosphorus ammunition. In addition, there have been attacks on numerous civilian facilities, including residential areas, schools, kindergartens, and hospitals. Also, ecologically valuable forests near the district capital Martuni are burning. "The Azerbaijani offensive has already driven more than half of the civilian population out of the region," reported South Caucasus expert Dr. Tessa Hofmann in Berlin today. "If the attackers succeed in capturing the strategically important city of Shushi, the people will probably not be able to return – and even more will be forced to flee." Before the Azerbaijani attacks, there were about 150,000 people living in Nagorno-Karabakh.
Today is considered the "Day of the Flag" in Azerbaijan. On this psychologically and propagandistically important date, Azerbaijan's head of state Ilham Aliyev announced that he wanted to raise his country's flag in the capital of Nagorno-Karabakh. "Turkish and Azerbaijani media have been spreading declarations of victory for several days now," Hofmann said. "The aim is to create fear among the people of Nagorno-Karabakh and at the same time reassure the own population." Some of the fake news even appeared in German media.
The ongoing war in the disputed mountain region had flared up again recently, at the end of September. According to the Russian government, which had repeatedly tried to negotiate a ceasefire, over 5,000 people have been killed since then. Thousands of Syrian mercenaries are fighting for Turkey on the side of Azerbaijan.