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Refugees from Azerbaijan as a new species of exiled Armenian citizens

In 1995, after the adoption of the Law on Citizenship, the process of “voluntary” smuggling of refugees from Azerbaijan started with the granting of citizenship, which gave them the right to elect and be elected, as well as to leave the country, writes the Director of NGO “Voice of the Refuge” Oksana Musayelyan in Hetq.am, presenting issues of the refugees from Azerbaijan.


Today, according to the State Migration Service under the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Development, about 20,000 refugees from Azerbaijan have been granted refugee status. However, as a result of the naturalization program, some 83,000 people, who have obtained Armenian citizenship, are convinced that naturalization is compelled and they consider themselves victims of the country’s migration policy. The reason for such a mood is unrealized dreams that the acquisition of citizenship will radically change their socio-economic situation. However, it was not enough to make them a de facto full-fledged citizen, as a result of which they would increase their opportunities to participate in society. Both categories are considered to be the poorest, marginalized and vulnerable layers of the population, which have a number of unsolved issues, including housing, education and employment.


As for the most painful topic – the housing issue, around 700 families of refugees have been provided with housing within the framework of the housing program for refugees from 2005 to 2008. However, the problem has not been raised since 2009, and no budget has been allocated for the solution. However, more than 1,000 refugees are in need of housing.


“There is no international or any document that states that the host country is obliged to provide them with housing,” says Yeganyan.


The fact that they are not just ordinary refugees, but also Armenians, instead of whom destiny decided to destabilize them due to the political problem in Karabakh, is unimportant to the letter of international law, which, as it turns out, is strictly adhered to by the Armenian authorities.


Full text in Armenian

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