The Fairy Tale
THE FAIRY TALE OF OCCUPIED 20 PERCENT OF LANDS AND 1 MILLION REFUGEES
In 1993 June 18
after two successive coups Heydar Aliyev, former Communist leader of Azerbaijan came to power by
ousting the legitimately elected Abulfaz Elchibey who fled to his native Nakhichevan.
Before the coup Armenian forces in Nagorno Karabagh had taken under their complete control the region
of Kubatli (802 sq. km), Jebrail (1,050 sq km), and Zangelan (797 sq. km), also parts of Aghdam
(383 sq. km) and Fizuli (347 sq. km).
April Armenian forces of Karabagh had taken under their control Kelbajar region (1, 845 sq. km).
If we sum these figures, we shall receive 7,060; that is the Karabagh forces are holding under their
control 7,060 sq. km of Azerbaijani territory out of the total 86,600. If the official Baku’s
assertions that Armenians have occupied 20- percent of Azeri lands are true, then according to
simple calculations, Karabagh Armenian forces should have had under their control 17,320 sq. km.
The same calculations show that Karabagh forces control only 8 percent of Azeri lands. Of course,
Heydar Aliyev also includes Nagorno Karabagh proper (4,33368 sq. km) into Azerbaijani land, but even
if this figure is added to 7,060 we shall get 11,400 sq. km, which makes not 20 percent of the
Azerbaijani total territory, but only 13 percent. We should not forget that parts of Martuni and
Mardakert regions, which are part of Nagorno Karabagh, about 15 percent, are under Azeri control.
succeeded in convincing the international community that Karabagh forces have seized 20 percent of
its lands, which, due to the Armenian authorities’ inactivity has become an axiom for the international
Now about another assertion by Aliyev that there are 1 million Azeri refugees. Not to be accused of
partiality we shall use only information from official Azeri sources. In 1989-1990 219,776
Azeris moved from Armenia to Azerbaijan. From Karabagh and adjacent regions another 568,989 people
fled (part of them were Kurds). The total figure was 788,765 people. This means that 1 million,
presented by Aliyev is inflated. Over the same time some 400,000 Armenians were compelled to flee
Azerbaijan, including 220,000 from Baku. The world does not know about them as neither the
administration of ex-president Ter-Petrosian nor the administration of current president Kocharian
are trying to capitalize on it. Of course, exploiting the tragedy of the deported Armenians cannot
be approved from the moral point of view, but from the point of politics it is quite justified and
Aliyev has practically proved it. But what we, the Armenian journalists are doing, especially those
who frequently travel to foreign countries. Part of Armenian reporters have no idea about the fairy
tale of the 20 percent of the occupied Azeri lands and 1 million Azeri refugees , the other part is
doing all they could to describe president Kocharian as a dictator. The same was true regarding
when fleeing from Azerbaijan left behind 75,000 apartments and mansions, unlike Azeris in Armenia who
were smart enough to sell their houses to Armenians. These 75,000 flats can accommodate 219,776 Azeri
refugees from Armenia in addition to another 300,000.
“Part of refugees enjoy a set of privileges, especially those from Armenia and they even live in
better conditions than many local Azeris,” Irada Huseinova, an Azeri journalist writes, adding that
during 1990 Armenian pogroms in Baku Azeri refugees from Armenia were occupying the apartments of
of refugees is a trump card in the hands of Aliyev in any election. Refugees exclusively “vote” for
Aliyev. Having 1 million refugees helps Aliyev justify the lamentable socio-economic conditions of his
country. In turn the international community sends regularly humanitarian aid in great quantities,
another source for Aliyev’s clan to increase their fortunes.
But along with this, Aliyev does not take into account an important factor, another ten years and
only few of the refugees would like to go back to their previous settlements. Is this profitable
for Armenia? Yes. If Armenia is able to populate those areas. These lands have never been Azerbaijan’s.
Azeris know that Kelbajar (Armenian Karvachar), Lachin (Berdzor) and Jebrail (Kovsakan) are historical
Armenian lands. And who says that Azeris and Armenians are not able to live peacefully, side by side
on those lands.