Essay by Anadol May 2004

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Nagorno- Karabakh conflict was always at heart of the dispute between Azerbaijan and Armenia. The nature of conflict sets itself in a circulated rotation by the claims of both sides over the territory. According to Armenians, Armenia has to have the right to rule over Nagorno-Karabakh in terms of national self-determination concept. On the other hand, Azerbaijan strongly defends the idea that Nagorno-Karabakh is an Azerbaijani land in terms of territorial integration concept. The developments in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict intensified after the petition given by Armenian authorities in August 1987, requesting that Nagorno-Karabakh and Nakhchivan has to be transferred to the Armenian SSR. The structure of this complex issue requires explaining the developments in a chronological order after 1987.

In October 1987, the first big reaction of the Armenian in Nagorno-Karabakh was the rejection of an Azeri sovkhoz administration in the pre-dominantly Armenian village of Chardakli in the North-Western Azerbaijan.

The cause lies behind this reaction was the suspicious tendencies of the Armenians because Armenians claim that the aim of Azerbaijani local party units in Nagorno-Karabakh was in fact to kick out the Armenian population.(Cornell,2001,p.78) Furthermore the most important complainment of the karabagh Armenians was that their national resources was being exploited by the Baku administration. By this driving out the Armenian population from karabagh was a deliberate policy to provide a demographic balance in favor of Azerbaijan. (Herzig, 2000, p. 66).

After the Chardakli event the Azeris in Armenia lived under very difficult conditions and faced with harassments. As a counter attack Armenians started to kick out Azeris from Armenia. After this pressure, on January 1988 the first big refugee group moved from Armenia to Baku and most of them resident in Sumgait in Baku's suburb (Cornell 2001,p. 79).

On February 11, the big protests have started in Karabakh...