Armenia and Azerbaijan agree to a Russia-negotiated ceasefire, marking a formal end to Nagorno-Karabakh conflict for now

  • A new deal negotiated between Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia was signed today, which the Armenian PM called 'incredibly painful' as he makes concessions after hundreds have died in the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia.
  • The US-brokered a truce in late October, but the ceasefire was broken within minutes. 
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Clashes between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the Nagorno-Karabakh region began more than a month ago and despite numerous efforts to put an end to the attacks many have died and many more have been injured. On Tuesday, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Russia agreed to a new deal, a trilateral statement that lays out the territorial changes as well as the conditions of the ceasefire.

The deal was first announced by Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on his social media channels, calling the deal "incredibly painful," but necessary after Azerbaijan announced Monday that it had recaptured Shusha (Shushi in Armenian), the second largest town in Nagorno-Karabakh.

Nagorno-Karabakh is a part of Azerbaijan but it is mainly populated and run by ethnic Armenians. 

"This is not a victory but there is not defeat until you consider yourself defeated. We will never consider ourselves defeated and this shall become a new start of an era of our national unity and rebirth," Pashinyan said. Protesters in the capital Yerevan reacted strongly to the deal, storming and occupying the parliament and chanting "Nikol betrayed us!"

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Russian President Vladimir Putin held a joint online conference today announcing the deal, adding that Russia would send close to two thousand peacekeeping forces along multiple corridors along Nagorno-Karabakh's front lines. The deal would force Armenia to concede the territories lost to Azerbaijan in the recent flare-up, while Azerbaijan will not be required to retreat and can establish new routes from Baku to the Nagorno-Karabakh region.

The leaders confirmed that Turkish troops would also maintain a presence along the front lines.

A US-brokered truce was agreed to on October 26, but it did not appear to hold.

Azerbaijan has accused Armenia of sending missiles that hit civilians killing 21 of them in the Barda district, Al Jazeera reported. Hikmet Hajiyev, the Azerbaijani presidential spokesman, told the BBC that Armenian forces had "used cluster munitions to inflict excessive casualties among civilians."

Ulviyya Babayeva, a local from Barda, Azerbaijan, which suffered missile attacks, told the BBC: "We saw a fire… bombs have been dropped. One fell on the car outside a bank building, fragments [of bombs] everywhere, [broken] glass [of cars/windows]… one of the bombs fell outside fire rescue station, there are dead and injured people."

Armenia has denied the attacks and also accused Azerbaijan of attacks on civilian areas in the region after the first ceasefire was established. 

The New York Times reported that in the Armenian controlled territory a city hospital was destroyed, one civilian was killed and another wounded, according to the local Emergency and Rescue Service. 

The overall number of people and military personnel killed since the clashes began is still not completely clear, and Azerbaijan has declined to release the number of troops who died. The Associated Press reported that as of November 6, at least 1,177 Nagorno-Karabakh troops have died as well as 50 civilians. As of the same timeframe, Azerbaijan has not released a military death toll but has reported 92 civilians have been killed and over 400 wounded. At the UN in October, Putin claimed that the actual death toll across both sides was nearing 5,000 deaths. The number of people injured across both sides is in the hundreds.

Tatevik Hayrapetyan, a member of the National Assembly in Armenia, previously told Business Insider that Azerbaijan has been uncooperative in upholding ceasefires. She claimed that while they may agree to resolutions, they would then proceed to bomb the region. 

"So, and those are Azerbaijani president obviously claims that no one can push him to stop because he sees the military solution to the conflict. And in this sense, I can say that Armenia from our side we also think that there shouldn't be any kind of military solution. We have always said that we are ready for a mutual compromise we are already for a conversation," Hayrapetyan said. 

Officials from Azerbaijan previously told Business Insider that they weren't the aggressors and the fighting is happening within their territory, not Armenia. They asserted that they simply want the 1993 UN Security Council resolutions, which called on Armenian forces to leave Azerbaijan's territory and urged both parties to resume negotiations, to be adhered to. 

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