Nagorno-Karabakh History

Before the turn of the ages, Nagorno-Karabakh belonged to the Urartian Empire (province of Ardechuni or Urdechini). The Azerbaijani historiography then ascribes the territory to Caucasian Albania, interprets it as an integral part of the historical state formation in Azerbaijan and the Caucasian Albanians as the ethnic substrate of the (later Turkic) population of Azerbaijan and thus negates a historical claim of the (according to this theory only reinforced since Armenians settled in the 19th century. On the other hand, Armenian historiography assumes that Nagorno-Karabakh is the central part of the documented historical Armenian province of Arzach (12,000 km 2), which also included areas lying in the valley of the Kura River (“Lower Karabakh”, Armenian Dashtajin-Arzach) and formed an eastern cultural land of Armenia since ancient times; Furthermore Nagorno Karabakh included parts of the Albanian provinces Uti (Armenian Utik) and Pajtarakan. The population of Nagorno-Karabakh, made up of Armenians, Albanians and Caspian ethnic groups (Uden and others), was evangelized in the beginning of the 4th century by Grigoris (Gregorios), the nephew of Gregory the Enlightener, and assimilated during the Islamization of the rest of the eastern Transcaucasus (7th-10th centuries ) Century) and the subsequent Turkization (11th century) to the Armenians already resident in Nagorno-Karabakh.

After the disintegration of the Christian Albanian and Armenian kingship (9th-11th centuries), vassals of the Shirvan Shahs controlled the area; in the 11th century was v. a. the lowlands were affected by Turkishization by immigrating Oghusen. During the period of the Mongolian-Turkmen Empire (13th-15th centuries), the term »Karabach« (»Black Garden«) came up in the 14th century for the region inhabited by well-fortified mountain farmers. 1836 “Albanian Catholic”, since the 8th century with an Armenian Catholic; seat since the end of the 14th century in Gandsassar / Chatschen) and was able to maintain its de facto autonomy.

From the 15th century, five »meliks« (Armenian petty princes from the regional nobility) ruled Karabakh, nominally as vassals of the Turkmens, and from the 17th century of Iran. In 1750, in the south of Nagorno-Karabakh, the “Khanate of Karabakh” (Shushi residence / Azerbaijani Shusha) was established for the first time under a Muslim ruler (from Khorasan). 1804-13 Russia established its sovereignty over the whole of Nagorno-Karabakh (Treaties of Kuraktschaj 1805 and Golestan 1813; 1822 abolition of the Khanate and assignment of the area to various administrative units, including since 1868 to the Jelisawetpol Governorate [area around the current city of Gäncä]). Nagorno-Karabakh was badly affected by the “Armenian-Tatar riots” (1905-07 and again 1918-20) with tens of thousands dead. It was first used in 1918 by Turkish-Azerbaijani troops, Andranik Ozanyan (* 1865, † 1927) and eventually came under British occupation. The nationalist Azerbaijani General Khosrow Bek Sultanov, who was appointed provisional governor-general in 1919/20, established a regime of terror (on March 23, 1920, massacre of the Armenian population of Shushi and destruction of the city).

After the establishment of Soviet power in Transcaucasia, the communist party leadership (“Kawbjuro”) placed Nagorno-Karabakh, over 90% of which is inhabited by Christian Armenians, under the administration of Azerbaijan, despite previous promises to the contrary to Soviet Armenia (decision of July 5, 1921). On July 7th, 1923 the core territory of historical Arzach received the status of an autonomous region as Nagorno-Karabakh; Nevertheless, the region was politically, economically, socially and culturally disadvantaged by the Azerbaijani authorities (due to the increasing restriction of the autonomous emigration of numerous Armenians to the Armenian Soviet Republic and especially to Moscow). Efforts by the Armenian part of the population to join Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia (1988 corresponding declaration by the Regional Soviet,

According to 800zipcodes, after repeated outbreaks of ethnic violence between Armenians and Azerbaijanis, which triggered a stream of refugees of both nationalities, the dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh (from January to November 1989 under Moscow’s special administration, on September 2, 1991 proclaimed an independent republic [confirmed by referendum on December 10]) and in November 1991 Abolition of the autonomy status by the Azerbaijani parliament) at the end of 1991 to the attempt of Azerbaijan to bring Nagorno-Karabakh back under its military control, and thus to bloody fighting with tens of thousands of dead between Azerbaijani troops and Karabakh-Armenians; The latter succeeded in 1992 (conquering Chodschaly, Shuscha and Lachin) in taking the western land corridor to the Republic of Armenia. The Azerbaijani districts bordering the former Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region to the east and south also came under the control of Karabakh-Armenian units (a total of approx. 20% of the Azerbaijani state territory). On 9 May 1994 a ceasefire brokered by Russia in Bishkek (Kyrgyzstan) came into force. Further negotiations on a lasting peace settlement under the auspices of the OSCE have so far failed due to the incompatibility of positions and Azerbaijan’s refusal to recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as a negotiating partner. 1994-97 was Further negotiations on a lasting peace settlement under the auspices of the OSCE have so far failed due to the incompatibility of positions and Azerbaijan’s refusal to recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as a negotiating partner. 1994-97 was Further negotiations on a lasting peace settlement under the auspices of the OSCE have so far failed due to the incompatibility of positions and Azerbaijan’s refusal to recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as a negotiating partner. 1994-97 was R. Kocharyan President of the unofficial republic, followed by Arkadi Gukasjan (* 1957) and in 2007 Bako Sahakjan (* 1960) in office. Sahakjan was confirmed as president in 2012 and 2017.

On December 10th, 2006 the residents of Nagorno-Karabakh voted again in a referendum (with 98.6% of the votes cast and a turnout of around 87%) for the – internationally not recognized – independence of their area and for the first time passed a constitution for the »Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh«. In the parliamentary elections in Nagorno-Karabakh on May 3, 2015, the Free Motherland party won 15 out of 33 seats. Despite the ceasefire, which has been in force since 1994, military incidents have occurred again and again, the last being in September 2020 to serious fighting. In a further referendum on February 20, 2017, a new constitution was approved (including the presidential system, renamed the »Republic of Arzach«)

Nagorno-Karabakh History.