Lachin district: 28 years of occupation
Twenty-eight years have passed since the occupation of Azerbaijan’s Lachin district by Armenia.
On the night of May 17, 1992, the occupants began their raid on Lachin district, entering the territory of Azerbaijan through the so-called Lachin corridor. More than 300 servicemen and civilians were killed or missing during the occupation of the Lachin district. More than 77,000 citizens of Lachin became the internally displaced persons and live in other Azerbaijani regions,
The occupation of Lachin, a region of great geostrategic significance, caused serious damage to Azerbaijan’s economy. The invaders destroyed hundreds of cultural objects, historical monuments, settlements, and villages in Lachin. As many as 217 cultural, 101 educational and 142 health institutions, 462 trade objects and dozens of other facilities were plundered and demolished.
More than 200 local historical monuments and 54 monuments of world importance became the object of Armenian vandalism. These included the Agoglan Albanian monastery of the 6th century, the Malik Ajdar tomb of the 14th century, a mosque in the Garagishlag village and an ancient cemetery in the Zabukh village.
The Lachin Historical Museum and an old collection of gold, silver and bronze coins were also looted. The exhibit of the museum – a bag of silver – was later sold for $80,000 at Sotheby's auction in London.
Azerbaijan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has issued the statement: "As a result of the occupation of the Lachin district, which was not part of the former Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Oblast of Azerbaijan, 237 people were killed and 67 people went missing. Inhabitants of the region were subjected to ethnic cleansing and currently 77.700 Lachin residents live as internally displaced persons (IDP) in different regions of Azerbaijan. The occupation of Lachin, as a continuation of the aggression policy of the Republic of Armenia against the Republic of Azerbaijan, has also inflicted serious damage to state and private property of the district," the statement reads.