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Armenia, Azerbaijan deal sparks celebrations and protests

Bianca Rahimi
Press TV, London

Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia have signed an agreement to end military conflict over the disputed enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh. Thousands have died and roughly 100,000 have been displaced but some say the deal is a betrayal.

After the deal was announced, people flooded the streets of Azerbaijan’s capital to celebrate the end of the conflict and the gains made. Via the deal Baku will hold on to areas of Nagorno-Karabakh that it took during the conflict including the enclave's second city of Shusha and between now and December first, ethnic Armenian forces must give up control of a slew of other territories.

However, over in Armenia there is no jubilation. Protesters have stormed the parliament branding the Prime Minister a traitor and calling for him to resign. Although the leadership of the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh enclave says 1,200 of its defense forces have been killed and the main city of Stepanakert would have been lost within days if the fighting had continued, some say victory was possible. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan says the deal was unbelievably painful, but unavoidable.

Keeping a close eye on the conflict throughout, Iran which shares borders with the disputed region called for a peaceful settlement of the conflict that respected international law and the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan.

Russian President Vladimir Putin says the arrangement will pave the way for a lasting political settlement. For now the battle is over, and thousands of people will now be left to pick up the pieces of their shattered lives.

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