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Azerbaijan arrests the former leader of Karabakh

2023-09-27 18:10:00, Kosova & Bota CNA

Azerbaijan arrests the former leader of Karabakh

Azerbaijan has arrested a former leader of Nagorno-Karabakh as he tried to leave the enclave for Armenia, officials say, according to the BBC.

Ruben Vardanyan, a businessman who led the separatist government from November 2022 to February, was among the thousands who tried to leave.

In total, 47,115 ethnic Armenians have now fled Nagorno-Karabakh, which was annexed by Azerbaijan last week.

Azerbaijan's border service said he was taken to the capital, Baku, and handed over to other state agencies.

As they crossed the border on Tuesday, thousands of ethnic Armenians were subjected to rigorous checks by Azerbaijan's border control.

Azerbaijani authorities claimed they were looking for "war crimes" suspects and a government source told the France Presse news agency that the country intended to apply an "amnesty to Armenian fighters who laid down their arms in Karabakh".

Nagorno-Karabakh is recognized as part of Azerbaijan and was controlled by ethnic Armenians for three decades./ CNA

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