Twenty-six years pass today since the Armenian occupation of Kerkijahan – a settlement of strategic importance for Azerbaijan’s Khankendi city and surrounding districts.
The occupation of Khankendi ended on December 28, 1991 with the seizure of Kerkijahan.
Before the occupation, Kerkijahan was protected by self-defense units formed from local Azerbaijanis, the newly established police and a group of soldiers of the National Army.
When the Armenian army started offensive of Kerkijahan using heavy weapons, the self-defense units had to retreat because of the inequality of the forces. The civilian population managed to get out of Kerkijahan thanks to the self-defense units’ temporary resistance.
As a result of the occupation of Kerkijahan by the Armenian armed groups, 34 of 1,796 habitants of the village, including 3 women and 2 babies, were killed and more than 150 people were wounded. Two high schools, a kindergarten, a library, a club, a telephone exchange building, 10 shops, a clinic, 15 manufacturing plants and other objects of everyday life were destroyed in Kerkijahan.