Northern Artsakh Occupation Must be Included in Peace Talks

Armenian victims of Getashen invasion

STEPANAKERT—On the 20th anniversary of Azerbaijan’s violent invasion of Shahumian and Getashen, which resulted in the depopulation of those areas from its Armenian residents, a group calling itself the Shahumian-Getashen Compatriotic Union issued an announcement urging that the invasion and occupation of those lands by Azerbaijan to be included in the peace talks.

June 13, 1992 was a tragic day for the population of Shahumian and Getashen. The Azerbaijani militants forcibly deported the entire population of Getashen. The same happened to the residents of Shahumian a year later. Eighteen Armenian villages in Northern Artsakh were invaded by Azerbaijan and they still remain occupied by the Azeri armed forces.

The group said that 20 years have passed since the events and the refugees still live in poor social conditions, many of them residing in temporary housing facilities. The issue of Northern Artsakh has never being discussed during the negotiations taking place within the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group.

“The resolution of the issue of Armenian refugees is impossible without the settlement of the issue of Northern Artsakh, since about half a million refugees will be deprived of the opportunity to return to their homes because of the lack of real security guarantees,” the group’s statement reads.

“It’s necessary to speak about losses and defeats although it is hard,” said President of the Union Edik Balayan.

“Azeris are intensively re-settling the Armenian villages, razing the Armenian settlements, historic monuments and cemeteries to the ground. They are attempting to erase all traces of Armenian identity. The actions of Azerbaijan over the past 20 years come to prove that the Armenians have never had and cannot have an opportunity to live under Azeri rule. Those engaged in the Artsakh issue must come to understand this,” added the statement.


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  1. Kevork said:

    Even though “the west” threatened invasion if Armenians don’t stop, I wish that Artsakh would have delayed the cease fire agreement by using trickery while liberating more lands from the invading Azeris. After all they were on a losing streak and on the run. We can thank NATO for stopping us from our natural right to establish for ourselves a stable and peaceful country at least with one less enemy in the East (as if dealing with the monster in the West was not enough). If we have ever learned any lesson in our tragic history its that never give one centimeter of land to these Asiatic invaders ever again under any circumstances. Never mind Azeris “returning” into Armenian territories, in actuality we should all demand that the international community recognize that Soviet borders are not legal, and the only MINIMUM border for Armenia must be that from the first republic which includes Nakhichevan, Javakhk, the rest of Artsakh, and Western Armenia and Cilicia. If we never get these Armenian lands back, it means that the world believes perpetrating genocide is legal and a profitable business. So far the western world of hypocrite governments have proven to us that an evil country can nearly destroy an entire ethnicity and steal its lands and culture and get away with it.

  2. Angela AchikgiozIan said:

    Seems to be very late. We should have done it from the first days of negotiations. Unfortunately, our leaders were busy with other matters…privatizing our country’s wealth, taking over forests, hills, natural resources, factories. Monopolizing industries, trade…meghq! Sumgait massacres still are awaiting…come on, move!

  3. Stepan said:

    Another clear reason why there can be no closure without NKR being a direct participant in the negotiations. The issues of refugee status and territory are directed related to the areas of Karabakh that currently are outside of NKR. If our position is clearly about self-determination, then the whole of Karabakh and historic Artsakh is at issue. If the Armenians living under oppressive Azeri rule was unbearable before 1991, then it is completly out of the question now with the blood of the soldiers and civilians spilled in defending their homes from the invaders…. in addition to the blockades, racism and outright hostile position of Azerbaijan. I think the third parties understand this reality; despite the rhetoric.
    The solution will be in terms of land swaps and population settlements. All the more reason that northern Karabakh and even Nakichevan must be included.

  4. ohannes said:

    there is no refugee status if there is one how but 1.000.000 Armenian left by force from they land
    all over Azerbaijan like from Artsvashen Nakichevan Northern Karabakh Baku all over if there is a refugee status Armenian have more refugee Armenian lost lot lot more land and human then Azerbaijan
    for the record:

  5. Edward Demian said:

    Absolutely. The Armenian lands went to the Kura River. Artsack of today should be the Atsack of the Gulistan treaty. Not a much reduced jerymandered remnant.

  6. Heghapokhagan said:

    The Truth is “Force” The Justice is Only “Force”

  7. Zareh Sahakian said:

    Reading this article are we to believe that official Yerevan does not talk about the northern territories, i.e. Shahumian, Getashen, Martunashen in the negotiations within the Minsk group?

    This is unbelievable.

    • Edward Demian said:

      Why unbelievable? I think that we intend to keep what we have, (all the liberated territories) and have given up hope for now for the three lost regions. That’s our compromise.