28 Sep 2023 09:40

Nagorno-Karabakh Republic ceases to exist on Jan 1, 2024 - order by unrecognized republic's head

YEREVAN. Sept 28 (Interfax) - President of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (NKR) Samvel Shakhramanyan signed an executive order on Thursday on actions stemming from the situation created after September 19, 2023.

"All government agencies and affiliated entities shall be dissolved by January 1, 2024, and the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (Artsakh) shall cease to exist," the order said.

The population of Nagorno-Karabakh, including people staying outside the republic, should study the terms of reintegration presented by Azerbaijan in order to make an independent, personal decision on whether to stay where they are or return to Nagorno-Karabakh, the order said.

The order takes effect once it is published.

The decision derives from the complicated military and political situation and the priority of ensuring physical security and crucial interests of the people of Nagorno-Karabakh, it says. It takes into account the agreement reached with Azerbaijani representatives with the mediation of the Russian peacekeeping contingent's command on the free, voluntary and unhampered transit of Nagorno-Karabakh residents, including servicemen who lay down their arms, and their property and vehicles through the Lachin corridor consistent with Article 93 of the Nagorno-Karabakh constitution.

Hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh, which started on September 19, were stopped on September 20 with the mediation of the Russian peacekeeping contingent. An agreement on the complete disarmament of the Nagorno-Karabakh Defense Army was reached. Representatives of Nagorno-Karabakh and Azerbaijan have held two reintegration meetings to date.

Residents started to leave Nagorno-Karabakh on September 24. The Armenian government said on Thursday "65,036 displaced persons had arrived in Armenia." According to the official statistics, Nagorno-Karabakh had an Armenian population of about 120,000.