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Major road closed as Nagorno-Karabakh civilian reportedly shot dead 

8 November 2021
Entrance to the city of Shusha (Shushi) near where the shooting was reported. Photo: Brandon Balayan/Civilnet.

Nagorno-Karabakh’s National Security Service reported that one Armenian civilian died and three were wounded as Azerbaijani troops fired at a group of workers repairing water pipes near the city of Shusha (Shushi). According to unconfirmed witness reports, Russian peacekeepers were nearby during the incident.

According to the official report, the incident took place at around 15:00 on 8 November and took place near the Lachin-Stepanakert road, which connects Stepanakert (Khankandi), the capital of Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia. The wounded have been transported to a hospital in Stepanakert.  

According to Nagorno-Karabakh Human Rights Defender Gegham Stepanyan, the deceased is 22 years old, while the three wounded civilians are 41, 31, and 43 years old, respectively. 

No names, or further identifying information has been released.

According to unconfirmed reports on social media, the incident took place a few hundred meters from Russian peacekeepers who are observing the road connecting Stepanakert to the Republic of Armenia. 

Stepanyan has reported that the section of the Lachin-Stepanakert road where the incident happened has been closed as law-enforcement bodies are carrying out investigative work.

As of publication, there have been no statements from Azerbaijani or Russian authorities.

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The same day as the incident, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev was in Shusha alongside Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar to mark the anniversary of Azerbaijani forces taking control of the city during the Second Nagorno-Karabakh War. 

In October, another Armenian civilian was killed by Azerbaijani fire, reportedly while carrying out agricultural work and accompanied by Russian peacekeepers.

[Read more: Nagorno-Karabakh civilian shot dead in apparent ceasefire violation]

For ease of reading, we choose not to use qualifiers such as ‘de facto’, ‘unrecognised’, or ‘partially recognised’ when discussing institutions or political positions within Abkhazia, Nagorno-Karabakh, and South Ossetia. This does not imply a position on their status.