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Russia starts withdrawing peacekeepers from Karabakh

News Desk || risingbd.com

Published: 18:32, 18 April 2024  
Russia starts withdrawing peacekeepers from Karabakh

Russian peacekeepers have begun withdrawing from Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh region, ending Moscow’s years-long military presence there.

Nearly 2,000 Russian peacekeeping soldiers were deployed to the breakaway South Caucasus region of Nagorno-Karabakh in November 2020 under a Moscow-brokered deal that halted six weeks of fighting between Azerbaijani and ethnic Armenian forces.

“This is indeed the case,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told a news agency on Wednesday in response to media inquiries without giving a timeframe for the withdrawal.

Hikmet Hajiyev, foreign policy adviser to Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, was cited by the state news agency Azertac as confirming a withdrawal agreement had been struck.

Despite the deployment, Azerbaijan retook Nagorno-Karabakh by force in September last year in a move that triggered an exodus of 120,000 ethnic Armenians living there and the arrest of the breakaway area’s ethnic Armenian leaders.