Baku unveils Azerbaijan's 10 key steps to rebuild Karabakh

2 June 2021 14:50 (UTC+04:00)

By Vafa Ismayilova

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Leyla Abdullayeva has unveiled 10 key steps that Azerbaijan has been taking to rebuild, regenerate and redevelop the liberated lands over the past 200 days since the signing of the trilateral Karabakh peace deal in autumn 2020.

Commenting on a document entitled “Factsheet: 200 days since the Trilateral Statement” posted on her official Twitter account on June 1, Abdullayeva said: “Have a look at 10 key developments during 200 days since the trilateral statement was signed in November 2020. Azerbaijan has been looking to rebuild, regenerate and redevelop the liberated territories, helping return IDPs to their homes decades after they were forced to leave.”

The document noted that "May 29 marked 200 days since the trilateral statement was signed between Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russia, in November 2020 to put an end to the almost 30-year-long occupation of Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized territories by Armenia".

Since then, Azerbaijan has been looking to rebuild, regenerate and redevelop the liberated territories, helping return IDPs to their homes decades after they were forced to leave. In efforts to ensure it adheres to the rule of law, Azerbaijan has also filed a complaint in the European Court of Human Rights against Armenia in January 2021 to hold Armenia accountable for numerous breaches of human rights throughout this period, it added.

Factsheet: 200 days since Trilateral Statement

“This factsheet details 10 key developments and statistics illustrating the work and efforts undertaken in the 200 days since then, and the lives impacted in that time,” the document added.

Below are the key points in question.

1. The Government of Azerbaijan has allocated over $1.3 billion to conduct reconstruction works in the liberated territories for the Year 2021. Reconstruction works have begun at major towns, mosques, historical monuments, mausoleums, museums, and so forth.

2. Initial monitoring has been conducted in the liberated territories by the Ministry of Culture, 314 state-registered historical and cultural monuments were inspected. The absolute majority of these monuments were completely destroyed.

3. Nearly 35,000 mines and unexploded ordnances cleared from over 9,106 hectares in the liberated territories (currently one of the most mine-contaminated areas in the world). More than 120 Azerbaijani have been injured or killed by mines planted by Armenia throughout the years of occupation as well as during the withdrawal from the occupied territories.

4. Over 15,000 people signed a petition calling on Armenia to release the location of mines and unexploded ordnance in the liberated territories which is one of the most signed petitions on change.org

5. The Government has engaged in discussions with large corporations for reconstruction works on the liberated territories. These territories will be the home to green energy and renewable energy investments. Japanese Tepsco advises the Government on the strategy fr green energy. BP plans to set up a solar energy production facility here.

6.The Government has announced the construction of the first “smart” villages and cities in the liberated district of Zangilan, the first village to be rebuilt by early 2022.

7. Road constructions, helping build highways linking towns in the liberated territories to improve infrastructure and ease the return of IDPs are underway. At present, about 600 km of roads in 7 directions, 158 km of railways in 2 directions, as well as 3 airports are being designed and built in the liberated territories. A new international airport being built in Fuzuli will test first flights this fall. Two more airports will be built in Zangilan and Lachin districts soon.

8. The master plan for the key city of Aghdam has been approved, with a new industrial park, memorial and victory parks, Barda-Aghdam highway, and rail link.

9. Completed inventory of over 13,000 buildings and over 1,500 km of road in 169 settlements in 10 regions of the liberated territories ahead of reconstruction efforts. 409 settlements were completely destroyed during the Armenian occupation.

10. Shusha, announced as the cultural capital of Azerbaijan, hosted the Khari Bulbul Music festival for the first time in nearly 30 years.

On November 10, Baku and Yerevan signed a Moscow-brokered deal that brought an end to 44 days of fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan. The Azerbaijani army declared a victory against the Armenian troops. The signed agreement obliged Armenia to withdraw its troops from the Azerbaijani lands that it has occupied since the early 1990s. 

Before the signing of the deal, the Azerbaijani Army had liberated around 300 villages, settlements, city centres and historic Shusha city. 

On January 11, the Azerbaijani, Russian and Armenian leaders signed the second statement since the end of the 44-day war. The newly-signed statement is set to implement clause 9 of the November 2020 statement related to the unblocking of all economic and transport communications in the region.

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