The Worldwide Committee of the Pink Cross says it shipped badly wanted flour and medical provides to an ethnic Armenian area inside Azerbaijan struggling underneath a highway blockade since late final yr
ByThe Related Press
September 18, 2023, 6:38 AM
YEREVAN, Armenia — The Worldwide Committee of the Pink Cross stated Monday that it shipped badly wanted flour and medical provides to an ethnic Armenian area inside Azerbaijan that has been struggling underneath a highway blockade since late final yr.
The area, Nagorno-Karabakh, has been underneath the management of ethnic Armenian forces, backed by Armenia, because the finish of a separatist conflict in 1994. Additionally they took management of sizable areas outdoors Nagorno-Karabakh itself, however Azerbaijan regained these territories in a six-week conflict in 2020.
That conflict left Nagorno-Karabakh with solely a single highway connection to Armenia. Since December, Azerbaijan largely blocked the highway amid allegations that Armenia was utilizing it for illicit weapons shipments and mineral extraction.
The closure brought about extreme food shortages for Nagorno-Karabakh’s roughly 120,000 folks. Azerbaijan proposed utilizing a highway that reaches the area from the other way, however Nagorno-Karabakh authorities resisted, claiming it was a technique for Azerbaijan to take management of the area.
On Monday, flour was shipped in through the highway from Armenia and medical and hygiene provides got here in from Azerbaijan, the ICRC stated.
“We’re extraordinarily relieved that many individuals reliant on humanitarian help will lastly obtain much-needed assist within the coming days,” stated Ariane Bauer, ICRC’s regional director for Europe and Central Asia. “Well being buildings are missing medical provides. Persons are queueing for hours for bread. They urgently want sustained aid by way of common humanitarian shipments.”
Nevertheless, David Babayan, a spokesman for the Nagorno-Karabakh president, stated the shipments don’t imply the roads are absolutely open, and that Monday’s deliveries had been obligatory as “a small drop of help,” based on the Armenian information portal Information.am. Babayan stated about 20 tons of flour got here from the Armenian aspect.
Final month, Armenia requested a U.N Safety Council emergency assembly to debate the humanitarian circumstances in Nagorno-Karabakh.