Thousands of Armenian civilians flee their homes in wake of Nagorno-Karabakh truce


Around 100,000 Armenian civilians have fled their villages, homes and even their loved ones in the wake of a Moscow-backed truce that called for Armenia to hand over control of some areas it holds around the Nagorno-Karabakh region. FRANCE 24's Luke Shrago filed this report.

Some refugees have found their way to makeshift centres where volunteers and aid workers offer support.

“They had to leave everything behind in the disaster,” said one woman who offered assistance. “They need everything – food, hygiene kits, even clothes – because winter’s on the way.”

Many are still searching for missing family and fear the worst.

One woman, Alla, told FRANCE 24 she had four children at the frontline. The most important thing, she said, was to find them.

“After that, we’ll see what life has in store and how we’ll continue to live.”

She fled with her daughter while she could, but her husband and their other children remained in Nagorno-Karabakh. Like many others she found Armenians waiting across the border with open arms.

Among them a woman who has opened up her home to the refugees: “They’ve been with us since October 3. It’s not very comfortable for sleeping, it’s no five-star hotel, but they want for nothing.”

“We all live together. If we were in their position, they’d do the same for us,” she said.

The fate of Alla’s sons is ever in mind as is that of their hometown Shushi, which is now under Azerbaijani control.

“We’ll hope we can go back to Stepanakert, maybe," she said.

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