CHAPTER 17 THE GORBACHOV REFORMS AND THE REVOLT OF KARABAKH

Twenty-five Armenians were beaten up that day, other fourteen, suffering serious physical injuries, were hospitalized, but the situation however, remained under control for the time being. In Stepanakert they refused to leave the square, for fear of internal troops occupying the square. At night, as a result of Aghdam attack, a general strike was declared.

The Kremlin representatives had to prolong their stay. Moscow too, was at a loss what to do, but their intention to keep the process under pressure than to solve the problem, was evident.

In Azerbaijan the tension was also rising, but for the time being, everything was orderly. The newspapers were full of official articles about friendship and brotherhood between people and about the “flourishing region of Karabakh”.

“Bakinski Rabochi”, 23 February 1988

“The dinamic development of the economical, cultural and spiritual spheres of Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Republic, due to the active support and attention of the party, economical and Soviet structures of the Republic, has achieved a high level”.

“Nagorny Karabakh is a developed agricultural and industrial region, playing a visible role in the economy of the whole Republic”.

“… trying to provide their absurd demands with a base, declaring that the economy, culture and education of the region are on the decline”.

“The workers of the NKAR have all the guarantees to look optimistically to the future”.

The national poet of Azerbaijan Bakhtiar Bahubzade used to repeat his provocative poem “No Share in the Land”:

“Won’t this serve as a lesson, or maybe they need to lose a flood of blood.”

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