The current conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan began in 1988, when
the ethnic Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh unilaterally declared their
independence from Azerbaijan, with the intent of uniting with the
Republic of Armenia. At that time, ethnic Armenians comprised about 65
percent of Nagorno-Karabakh. This push by the ethnic Karabakh Armenians
to secede from Azerbaijan was instigated by Armenia, which has had
territorial claims against Azerbaijan as part of its desire to create a
Greater Armenia by expanding its territory. Armenian soldiers and arms
are being used to carry out this policy.
The conflict was
escalated by Russia's political and military support of Armenia. Russia
is using the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict as part of its long-time
policy of "divide and conquer." Since 1993, Armenia has received $1
billion in arms shipments from Russia. These arms, including the most
modern Russian tanks, armo
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