David O’Brien, Editor
A new war has sparked in Asia as Armenia and Azerbaijan fight for the Nagorno-Karabakh region. The Nagorno-Karabakh region is officially ruled and recognized as a part of Azerbaijan, however, the region claims to be an autonomous republic, known as the Republic of Antsaleh. The area’s population is primarily ethnic Armenians.
While the new conflict started on Sept. 27, the situation goes as far back as 1988. The region declared independence and won numerous revolutionary battles which culminated in a cease-fire in 1994. However, this was meant to only be a temporary truce while a comprehensive peace deal was established. The conflict resulted in 600,000 people left without homes and forced away from their country. Azerbaijan pledged that they would one day reconquer the territory. The conflict re-emerged when Azerbaijan claimed Armenia launched an unprovoked attack. Armenia denied these accusations and proceeded to blame Azerbaijan for their own unprovoked attack.
The territorial conflict has major international implications as each side is backed by major countries on the world stage. France and Russia have both backed Armenia and Turkey has backed Azerbaijan. While originally Turkey and Russia both worked to maintain peace in the region, as the two of them have attempted to establish dominance over the Middle East since the United States began to exit the area, the nations have become distant. Turkey attempts to cement their power globally, and the EU and Russia have become increasingly frustrated with Turkish military action in regions like Syria, Libya and now Nagorno-Karabakh. Armenia has claimed Turkish aircrafts have been deployed and have shot down numerous Armenian fighter jets. Armenia also claims numerous troops have been sent from Syria because of Turkish pressure and manipulation. While Turkey denies both of these claims, the French and Russians believe Turkey is intervening, as these strategies were previously used in the Turkish conflict with Libya. France has denounced Turkish actions and warned Turkey to stand down. France also claims they will not accept nor tolerate Azerbaijan victory or conquest of the region. Russian parliament is on the fence on what their next course of action should be. Russia wants to attempt to negotiate a peace deal, however, Parliament is beginning to believe their next course of action should be to send in troops to maintain order in the region and keep the peace. While Russia attempts to negotiate peace in the region, Azerbaijan has denied to make any peace talks. Over one hundred people have died in the conflict for the mountainous, 1,700-square-mile region as of the time of this publication.