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At Entrance Traces of a Brutal Struggle: Loss of life and Despair in Nagorno-Karabakh

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Azerbaijan has not been disclosing its army demise toll. However the authorities mentioned Saturday that 14 civilians have been killed in Ganja, Azerbaijan’s second-largest metropolis, in an in a single day missile assault by Armenia.

Officers say that greater than half the individuals of Nagorno-Karabakh have fled their houses, although the martial regulation at the moment in impact bars males of army age from leaving the territory. Those that stayed behind embody ladies who need to be near their husbands, sons and fathers despatched to the entrance strains. The coronavirus is much down the record of individuals’s worries, although worldwide assist organizations warn that cramped bomb shelters are spreading an infection.

Alyona Shakhramanyan, 33, and her neighbors from the fifth flooring of an house constructing in Shusha, the hilltop city, moved three weeks in the past into a bit of their dirt-floor basement. They common a door out of a sheet of corrugated plastic and taped cardboard over the openings within the concrete partitions. One of many ladies is sick — a chilly, they are saying, that she caught due to the drafty air.

Ms. Shakhramanyan’s brother, who, like her husband, is on the entrance, has not been answering his cellphone. When she went exterior to do laundry the day gone by, she was frightened by the thrill of a drone. Rocket artillery hit the close by Holy Savior Cathedral twice earlier this month, and the paving stones exterior it have been nonetheless stained with the blood of a Russian journalist critically injured within the second strike.

“Nobody helps us right here,” Ms. Shakhramanyan mentioned. “We’re on our personal.”

On the army cemetery in Stepanakert, the resting place of fighters who died within the Nineties, the authorities eliminated a retaining wall and dug right into a hillside to make manner for the brand new casualties. Amid the artificial-flower wreaths and easy grave websites on the freshly graded, rocky filth, a person whose brother was gone unfold his arms in grief.

“These are contemporary — our guys,” he cried, his voice trailing off. “What’s there to say?”