The Region in Brief

November 16-22, 2022

Armenia

Armenia and Azerbaijan have been exchanging accusations of ceasefire violations along the Armenia-Azerbaijan border and in Artsakh throughout the week. Azerbaijani armed forces fired on military and civilian targets near the Machkalashen village of the Martuni region of Artsakh on November 21, including a civilian tractor, according to the Artsakh Defense Army. Azerbaijani forces also opened fire on Armenian military positions along Armenia’s eastern border on November 20 and 21, according to Armenia’s Defense Ministry. An Armenian soldier received a gunshot wound from Azerbaijani fire on November 17. The Ministry of Defense of Azerbaijan said that it had taken “necessary measures” in response to “engineering measures to strengthen combat positions” by Artsakh Defense Army on November 17. Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry accused Armenian forces of firing on Azerbaijani positions along the Armenia-Azerbaijan border and near Artsakh on November 18, 21 and 22. 

Georgia

The United National Movement (UNM) has proposed its own anti-oligarch law in response to the draft law submitted by the ruling Georgian Dream party. The opposition party has criticized the law proposed by the ruling party on the grounds that it would likely leave Georgian Dream founder Bidzina Ivanishvili unaffected. According to the UNM draft law, which was submitted to parliament on Sunday, an oligarch must meet several criteria, including carrying out political activities, exerting significant influence on the media, owning a company in a monopolistic sector, having assets exceeding 0.35-percent of Georgia’s GDP or owning more than seven percent of Georgia’s land, or being subject to EU or NATO sanctions. On June 9, the European Parliament called on the EU to consider adopting sanctions against Ivanishvili. 

Turkey

Turkey launched airstrikes in northern Syria and Iraq this week, targeting Kurdish military units it claims were responsible for the November 13 bomb attack in central Istanbul. Two members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) were killed in airstrikes on Tuesday targeting a military base. The SDF said that 11 civilians were killed and a hospital destroyed by strikes over the weekend targeting villages largely populated by displaced civilians. A British human rights group said that at least 31 people, including SDF soldiers, were killed by 25 airstrikes. Iraqi authorities said at least 32 members of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) were killed in 25 air raids. The SDF and PKK have denied involvement in a bomb explosion in Istanbul that killed six people and injured over 80 others. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has invaded northern Syria three times since 2016. 

Lillian Avedian

Lillian Avedian

Lillian Avedian is a staff writer for the Armenian Weekly. Her writing has also been published in the Los Angeles Review of Books, Hetq and the Daily Californian. She is pursuing master’s degrees in journalism and Near Eastern Studies at New York University. A human rights journalist and feminist poet, Lillian's first poetry collection Journey to Tatev was released with Girls on Key Press in spring of 2021.
Lillian Avedian

@LillianAvedian

Graduate student @GloJo_NYU and @nyukevo. Staff writer @armenianweekly. Editorial intern @DAWN_Journal.
Thank you @nyukevo! https://t.co/rObY5oUAbX - 2 weeks ago
Lillian Avedian

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