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Nagorno-Karabakh: A Limbo with No End

It could be viewed as a success. According to the UN's refugee agency, the UNHCR, 21 percent of refugees in Armenia have gained Armenian citizenship since 1995. That, says the UNHCR, is one of the highest rates of voluntary naturalization anywhere in the world in recent decades.

The total number of naturalizations–65,000–also indicates how huge a refugee problem Armenia faced just as the Soviet Union was collapsing and, with it, the Armenian economy. From 1988 to 1994, 360,000 ethnic Armenians flooded into Armenia first to avoid pogroms in Baku, Azerbaijan, and then, in a process mirrored in Azerbaijan, to flee fighting in Nagorno-Karabakh, a region assigned to Azerbaijan by the Soviet authorities. Another 60,000 moved from regions bordering Azerbaijan that were heavily shelled during the war.

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Nagorno-Karabakh: A Limbo with No End

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