Azerbaijan has installed a road sign at their Berdzor(Lachin) Corridor checkpoint near the Hakari bridge of Artsakh that reads: “Attention! You are entering the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan!”
Earlier, it was reported that negotiations are ongoing to reopen the Hakari bridge, with the participation of the commander of the Russian peacekeeping contingent in Artsakh, Andrey Volkov.
The Russians are holding separate talks with both the Azerbaijani and Artsakh sides, according to Artur Harutyunyan, the head of the ruling faction of the Artsakh parliament.
However, according to him, these negotiations, which are in progress for the third day, have not yet yielded any results.
The Ministry of Defense (MOD) of Russia has called the recent actions of Azerbaijan at the Berdzor(Lachin) corridor “unilateral and not agreed upon.” As stated in the respective Russian MOD information bulletin, “As a result of unilateral and not-agreed-upon actions on April 23, 2023, the Azerbaijani side has blocked traffic through the Lachin corridor in the area of the observation post of the Russian peacekeeping contingent No. 1.”
On April 23, the State Border Service of Azerbaijan officially announced the installation of a checkpoint in the Berdzor (Lachin) corridor, as stated by the command of the Russian Peacekeeping Contingent.
The situation on the bridge over the Hakari River is as follows:
. Six peacekeepers are stationed at the forefront of the bridge over the Hakari River.
. A platoon of Azerbaijani border guards (lined up diagonally) are guarding the construction of the border checkpoint.
. The… pic.twitter.com/3Jz9IZ9GQY
— 301🇦🇲 (@301arm) April 24, 2023
This latest blockade is a gross violation of the 2020 trilateral agreement between Azerbaijan, Armenia, and Russia, as well as a human rights violation. Since December 12, 2022, Azerbaijan has blockaded 120,000 people in Artsakh. As part of the agreement, the Hakari Bridge was located in the area of responsibility of the Russian peacekeeping contingent, which means Azerbaijan does not have the right to close it.
The authorities of the Republic of Artsakh strongly condemned this latest provocation by Azerbaijan, considering it a criminal step aimed at deepening the blockade of Artsakh and perpetrating ethnic cleansing. This action violates not only the tripartite statement but also the binding decision of the International Court of Justice of the United Nations and other fundamental norms of international law.
The Hakari Bridge serves as a vital link connecting the villages of Lisagor, Mets Shen, Hin Shen, and Yegtsahogh in Armenia and Artsakh, but it is currently closed due to the blockade.
President of Artsakh, Arayik Harutyunyan, has called for an urgent meeting of the Security Council to discuss the latest developments and the relevant actions of the authorities of Artsakh.
The Artsakh Info Center stated that they will provide further details on the events and urged everyone to follow official information and refrain from spreading unverified information.
Armenia’s Representative for International Legal Affairs will file an application with the International Court of Justice (ICJ) regarding Azerbaijan’s establishment of a checkpoint in the Berdzor (Lachin) Corridor, as confirmed by the spokesperson for Armenia’s Representative for International Legal Affairs.
In response to the blocking of the Berdzor (Lachin) corridor near the Hakari River by Azerbaijani troops, peacekeepers blocked the road near the tent camp of the Azerbaijani occupiers, who have been blocking Artsakh for more than four months.
In response to the blocking by Azerbaijani troops of the Berdzor (Lachin) corridor near the Khakari River, peacekeepers blocked the road near the tent camp of the Azerbaijani occupiers, who have been blocking Artsakh for more than 4 months. pic.twitter.com/Y5K8zEdEWU
— 301🇦🇲 (@301arm) April 24, 2023
After Azerbaijan installed a checkpoint on the border with the Republic of Armenia, blocking the highway connecting Artsakh with Armenia, the residents of the communities of Yeghrsahogh, Hin Shen, Mets Shen, and Lisagor in the Shushi region of the Republic of Artsakh found themselves completely under blockade. State Minister of the Republic of Artsakh, Gurgen Nersisyan, wrote about this on his Facebook page.
According to him, the villages are now cut off from both Stepanakert and Armenia.
This is a developing story and may be updated as more information becomes available.