Minimum of 20 Fatalities in Fuel Station Blast as Inhabitants of Nagorno-Karabakh Seek Refuge in Armenia

by Andrew Wright
Nagorno-Karabakh Gas Station Explosion

On Tuesday, the separatist governing body in Nagorno-Karabakh reported a minimum of 20 fatalities and close to 300 injuries following a devastating explosion at a fuel station. The incident transpired as individuals, intending to evacuate to Armenia, were queuing for petrol.

According to the health department of the self-proclaimed region, 13 corpses have been recovered, while seven additional individuals succumbed to injuries sustained in the blast. The explosion took place late Monday evening at a fuel station located on the outskirts of the regional capital, Stepanakert.

The department also indicated that 290 individuals have received hospital treatment, with a significant number remaining in critical condition.

The explosion unfolded at a time when residents were assembling to refuel their vehicles for the purpose of evacuating the region. In the wake of Azerbaijan’s rapid military action aimed at fully reasserting control over Nagorno-Karabakh, thousands of its inhabitants are relocating to Armenia, thereby ending a three-decade-long separatist regime.

Last week, Azerbaijani forces effectively overwhelmed Armenian military units in a 24-hour onslaught, compelling the separatist administration to acquiesce to disarmament and engage in discussions regarding the “reintegration” of Nagorno-Karabakh into Azerbaijan. Although Azerbaijan has vowed to uphold the rights of the ethnic Armenians residing in the region and resume supply lines following a 10-month embargo, many local inhabitants harbor fears of retaliation and have opted to move to Armenia.

As of Monday evening, the Armenian government confirmed that over 6,500 residents of Nagorno-Karabakh had taken refuge in Armenia. Moscow has disclosed that Russian peacekeeping forces stationed in Nagorno-Karabakh are facilitating the ongoing evacuation. Approximately 700 individuals were residing in the peacekeepers’ encampment in the region as of Monday night.

Control over Nagorno-Karabakh was initially seized by ethnic Armenian militias, supported by the Armenian military, at the conclusion of separatist hostilities in 1994. During the 2020 armed conflict, Azerbaijan regained portions of Nagorno-Karabakh as well as adjacent territories previously under the control of Armenian forces.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Nagorno-Karabakh Gas Station Explosion

What happened at the gas station in Nagorno-Karabakh?

A devastating explosion occurred at a fuel station in Nagorno-Karabakh, resulting in at least 20 fatalities and close to 300 injuries. The explosion took place when residents of the region were queuing for petrol, intending to evacuate to Armenia.

When did the gas station explosion in Nagorno-Karabakh occur?

The explosion transpired late on Monday evening, at a fuel station located on the outskirts of the regional capital, Stepanakert.

Who were the people affected by the explosion?

The people affected were primarily residents of Nagorno-Karabakh who were lining up at the gas station to refuel their vehicles. They were planning to evacuate to Armenia due to fears following Azerbaijan’s military actions in the region.

What is the current health status of the injured?

According to the health department of Nagorno-Karabakh, 290 individuals have been hospitalized. A significant number of these individuals remain in critical condition.

How has this event impacted the ongoing conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan?

The explosion has escalated tensions and added a layer of complexity to the humanitarian concerns in the region. It comes in the wake of a rapid military operation by Azerbaijan to regain control over Nagorno-Karabakh, causing thousands of residents to flee to Armenia.

What role are Russian peacekeepers playing in the situation?

Russian peacekeepers stationed in Nagorno-Karabakh are assisting in the evacuation process. As of Monday night, around 700 individuals were residing in the peacekeepers’ encampment in the region.

What has been the Armenian government’s response?

The Armenian government has confirmed that as of Monday evening, over 6,500 residents of Nagorno-Karabakh had taken refuge in Armenia.

What were the long-term separatist movements in Nagorno-Karabakh?

Control over Nagorno-Karabakh was initially seized by ethnic Armenian militias, supported by the Armenian military, at the end of separatist hostilities in 1994. The region has been a point of contention between Armenia and Azerbaijan for decades.

What actions has Azerbaijan taken recently in Nagorno-Karabakh?

Azerbaijani forces recently executed a rapid military operation to reassert control over the region. The operation compelled the separatist administration in Nagorno-Karabakh to agree to disarmament and discussions regarding “reintegration” into Azerbaijan.

What are the fears of ethnic Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh?

Many ethnic Armenians in the region fear reprisals from Azerbaijani authorities, despite Azerbaijan’s pledges to respect their rights and resume supply lines after a 10-month blockade. This has led to a mass evacuation to Armenia.

More about Nagorno-Karabakh Gas Station Explosion

  • Nagorno-Karabakh History and Background
  • Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict Overview
  • Humanitarian Concerns in Nagorno-Karabakh
  • Role of Russian Peacekeepers in Nagorno-Karabakh
  • Latest Military Actions by Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh
  • Health Department Reports on Gas Station Explosion in Nagorno-Karabakh

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Karen W September 26, 2023 - 9:43 am

Is there any end in sight for these people? It’s heart wrenching to read about incidents like this on top of the ongoing conflict.

Mike T September 26, 2023 - 11:28 am

Scary stuff. What’s even worse is that this happened to people who were just tryin to escape to safety. Really makes you think.

John D September 26, 2023 - 7:22 pm

Wow, this is really sad news. can’t believe how quickly things are spiraling outta control in that region.

Samantha R September 26, 2023 - 9:38 pm

This article does a good job of summarizing the complex issues in Nagorno-Karabakh. but man, when will the violence end?

Tim J September 27, 2023 - 1:46 am

Reading this makes me realize how good we have it where I live. can’t even imagine having to queue for gas and then something like this happens.

Paul G September 27, 2023 - 6:38 am

Why isn’t this headline news everywhere? More people need to know about the tragedies happening there.

Linda S September 27, 2023 - 7:22 am

I hope international organizations step in. Clearly, the situation’s dire and needs immediate intervention.


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