Artsakh dissolution decree was ‘the only way’ to save people, president says

President Samvel Shahramanyan claims his decree ordering the dissolution of the Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) Republic was the “only way” to save its indigenous Armenian population in the wake of Azerbaijan’s offensive in September 2023.

“I realize that the Nagorno-Karabakh dissolution document was illegal, but it was the only way to save the people,” he told Le Figaro in an interview.

“We couldn’t show resistance because the forces were unequal, that’s why we quickly established contact with Azerbaijan to keep the civilian population away from hostilities,” Shahramanyan noted.

In response to the question of whether there is a state and a government in exile, Shahramanyan noted: “Yes, the building where I host you in Yerevan houses the presidential office, as well as the offices of the judicial and legislative bodies of Artsakh. Parliamentarians can gather here to vote. In October, I signed a decree stipulating that all cabinet ministers remain in office on a voluntary basis.”

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