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The 44-day Patriotic War put an end to the protracted occupation of Azerbaijan’s lands. The liberated territories are now being revived and regenerated under the direct leadership of President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev.

The nearly 30-year occupation of 20 per cent of Azerbaijan’s territories had disastrous consequences for our historical and cultural heritage. Analysis shows that the Armenian side destroyed Azerbaijan’s monuments on an even greater scale in the period after the fighting had ended, in other words, during the 26 years that followed the 1994 cease-fire.

The Armenian side began a large-scale war against Azerbaijan at the end of 1991 in order to realize their illegal and baseless territorial claims. As a result, Armenia occupied a significant part of Azerbaijan’s territory, which was rich in natural resources and cultural heritage. Tens of thousands of people lost their lives in the war, and cities, towns, and villages were destroyed by Armenian vandalism. Over 700,000 Azerbaijanis were ethnically cleansed from the occupied territories as a whole and the region’s infrastructure was severely damaged.

More than 700 historical monuments, 22 museums including 100,000 museum exhibits, 927 libraries, 58 archaeological sites, 26 fortresses and fortress walls, and other cultural monuments were appropriated, looted, and destroyed.

The policy of the deliberate destruction of heritage during the occupation struck a blow to both Azerbaijan’s culture and world civilization, and the damage has yet to be repaired. Armenia deliberately changed the cultural appearance of residential areas in the occupied territories, destroyed monuments, changed architectural features, and conducted archaeological digs with the aim of eliminating all the signs that these belong to Azerbaijan.

However, on 27 September 2020, the Azerbaijan Army counterattacked along the front in order to prevent Armenia’s aggression and began to liberate the territories occupied by Armenia during the First Karabakh War in the early 1990s. The war lasted 44 days and was named the Patriotic War. Led by the Azerbaijan Republic’s President, the Victorious Supreme Commander Ilham Aliyev, the Glorious Azerbaijan Army showed its strength and achieved victory for Azerbaijan. Immediately after the Azerbaijan Army liberated the city of Shusha, considered Azerbaijan’s capital of culture, on 10 November 2020, a trilateral statement was signed by Azerbaijan, Armenia, and Russia, and, as a result, Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity was restored on 1 December.

President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev confirmed a new Karabakh and East Zangazur economic region by decree on 7 July 2021. The Karabakh part of the region consists of the city of Khankandi and districts of Aghjabadi, Aghdam, Barda, Fuzuli, Khojaly, Khojavand, Shusha, and Tartar. At the same time, East Zangazur is made up of Jabrayil, Kalbajar, Gubadli, Lachin, and Zangilan districts. A rapid process of revival and regeneration is underway in Karabakh and East Zangazur.

The information bulletin Since the Victory provides an official record of the revival and regeneration process in our liberated territories.

Each issue of the bulletin is published in four languages – Azerbaijani, Russian, English, and Spanish – and covers six months, coming out twice a year in January and July.