Nagorno-Karabakh truce: Residents face an unclear future

Russian officers have begun what is set to display a 5-year-peacekeeping mission in and about the Nagorno-Karabakh region. Lachin resident Valya Yegiazaryan says she screamed when she saw the tanks go by.

Yegiazaryan operates a cafe in the town that gives its name to the important corridor soon to shift the only passageway Armenians will have to enter the territory. The area is now patrolled by Russian troops.

“People are so nice,” . “I wake up in the day and say to them ‘Hi, good morning, how are you exploring?’ I ask if they need tea or coffee. They say no, no thank you. I wonder if they’re scared to talk to us.”

Two thousand Russian soldiers are expected to observe peace under the ceasefire deal negotiated by Moscow. They have begun setting up check posts alongside the M12 highway that runs in the corridor, still deeply marked by the latest round of combat.

Most citizens of the town of Lachin still have no power or running water. But some are set to stay

Makinyan has resided here for 20 years. When the war broke, she didn’t leave. Instead, she decided to open her door to Armenian soldiers, who often come for a coffee or a nap, and who didn’t want to be filmed.

Now they’re leaving and Makinyan says it’s hard to predict what will occur next.

“I want to live here til the last day of my life because I am at life where I can get a heart attack at any time. Doesn’t matter if it’s great or bad, this is my hole in the world.”

Her “edge of the world” is a land others also claim as legally theirs. But for now, peace seems to be obtained by some powerful external players, and what happens after they’re gone is the inquiry very few here dare to hold.