Almost two decades ago, the big guns fell silent in the war between Armenians and Azeris. Today, the 1994 ceasefire trench lines remain frozen in place. But Azerbaijan holds presidential elections in October. Now, some fear this frozen conflict could reignite over Nagorno-Karabakh, the Voice of America writes.
Ashot Ghoulian, chair of the National Assembly of Nagorno-Karabakh, said aid flows here from Armenians around the world.
“The Diaspora has a huge significance for the social economic development of Karabakh,” he said in the offices of the parliament of the self-proclaimed Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. “What our compatriots are sending from America, from European countries, from Russia, and the former Soviet states – all of this allows us to complete very serious economic projects.”
Diaspora aid paved Karabakh’s lifeline to the outside world – a curving mountain road to neighboring Armenia. To further cut Karabakh’s isolation, a new airport has been completed for Stepanakert, the region’s capital.
But it remains unused: Azerbaijan threatens to shoot down planes landing here. And Azeri President Ilham Aliyev has repeated vows to retake Nagorno-Karabakh, by force if necessary.
He said: “What’s happening with Azerbaijan, anti-Armenian hysteria, the arms race, and Armenophobia – I think all of this is postponing resolution of the Karabakh problem.”