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‘They Hate Us So Much’: World’s Oldest Christian Nation Faces Ethnic Cleansing

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The conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh has resulted in the ethnic cleansing and displacement of the Christian Armenian population.

More than 100,000 Armenians have been forced to flee their ancestral homes due to Azerbaijan’s seizure of the region.

The conflict is rooted in ethnic and religious differences, with Azerbaijan showing animosity towards the indigenous Armenian population. (Trending: Meet Mike Johnson, Your New House Speaker)

“Ethnicity and religion are intertwined. Azerbaijanis may say they do not hate Christians But, when it comes to Armenians — the indigenous population in the region — the Azerbaijanis show no tolerance,” explained Dr. Michael Rubin, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and expert on the region.

“Azerbaijanis recognize deep down that had it not been for Joseph Stalin, they would have no claim whatsoever to Nagorno-Karabakh. The Azerbaijanis realize they have no legitimacy and so target with special animus those who do.”

Yana Avanesyan, a doctoral researcher who is originally from Nagorno-Karabakh, said, “When we say Armenians, we are speaking about us being Christians. We know they hate us so much that they will just destroy everything.”

The refugees face dire conditions, with limited resources and uncertainty about their future. (Trending: Dirty Trick Inside Biden’s $100 Billion Bill)

The international community’s response has been criticized, and there are concerns that Azerbaijan may further expand its control into Armenia.

“War started in Nagorno-Karabakh, and people were forced to flee, and more than 100,000 people — including my entire family, my parents, my sister, my grandma — they were forced to flee their homes,” Avanesyan said.

“There are not enough resources in Armenia and people try to solve their issues by themselves. So we are trying to find apartments or houses for me, my family, and my relatives,” said Avanesyan.

“I’m currently trying to find an apartment for my family before we will know what’s going on because the situation now is very uncertain.”

“No one from the displaced people knows what is going to happen to us,” she said.

The conflict could also lead to shifting alliances among global and regional powers.

Former U.S. Ambassador Sam Brownback has called for increased support to Armenia and highlighted the broader pattern of anti-Christian discrimination worldwide.

“That land that we were on, that Armenians lived on for thousands of years, now, only a handful remain,” Iskayjan said.

“Azerbaijan did not order any Armenians to leave,” Amberin Zaman wrote from Armenia for Al-Monitor.

“Yet it ensured that life was so miserable that few would opt to stay. Indeed, even as Azerbaijani authorities rebuffed claims of ethnic cleansing, insisting their forces had struck ‘legitimate military targets,’ eyewitness accounts of rape and indiscriminate shelling that wounded and killed children began to emerge.”

“It is amazing that an ethnic cleansing happened in the 21st century and there is absolutely no reaction from the international community,” political analyst Tigran Grigoryan told NPR.

“If this happened somewhere in Europe, I believe [the Azerbaijani leadership] would already be on international wanted lists.”

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