MOSCOW, December 1. /TASS/. Troops of Russia’s peacekeeping contingent are ensuring security of vehicle traffic and movement of citizens via the Lachin corridor in Nagorno-Karabakh, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Tuesday.
"The peacekeepers are ensuring security of civilian vehicle traffic and movement of citizens through the Lachin corridor [connecting Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh], the shipment of foodstuffs and various goods and are escorting and ensuring security of repair crews, which are fulfilling the tasks on restoring infrastructure facilities," the ministry said in a statement.
More than 26,000 refugees have come back home since November 14, the ministry stated.
Renewed clashes between Azerbaijan and Armenia erupted on September 27, with intense battles raging in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh. The conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, a disputed territory that had been part of Azerbaijan before the Soviet Union break-up, but primarily populated by ethnic Armenians, broke out in February 1988 after the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region announced its withdrawal from the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic. In 1992-1994, tensions boiled over and exploded into large-scale military action for control over the enclave and seven adjacent territories after Azerbaijan lost control of them.
On November 9, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan signed a joint statement on a complete ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh starting from November 10. The Russian leader said the Azerbaijani and Armenian sides would maintain the positions that they had held and Russian peacekeepers would be deployed to the region. Besides, Baku and Yerevan must exchange prisoners and the bodies of those killed. The 15th detached motorized infantry brigade units of the Central Military District form the backbone of the peacekeeping contingent. The Russian peacekeepers have set up observation posts along the contact line in Nagorno-Karabakh and along the Lachin corridor that connects Armenia with the enclave to exercise control of the ceasefire observance. The peacekeeping mission’s command is stationed in Stepanakert, the de facto capital of Nagorno-Karabakh. The situation in the area is monitored round-the-clock.