As the war between Israel and Hamas continues to ramp up, one persecution expert is warning of another crisis taking place in Armenia.
According to Faithwire, approximately 120,000 ethnic and Christian Armenians from Nagorno-Karabakh, a small, landlocked region between Armenia and Azerbaijan, have left after Azerbaijan arrived and took the land.
“As of two weeks ago, virtually the entire Armenian population has left Nagorno-Karabakh, so this land that was part of the ancient Armenian Christian Homeland for thousands of years is now empty,” he told CBN News. “It really is a complete ethnic cleansing of the entire region.”
Meanwhile, the attack also led to the disbanding of the government of Nagorno-Karabakh.
“What really concerns us now is that there are hundreds, if not thousands, of people that are still missing, and the Armenian authorities are trying to put lists together,” he said. “But the evacuation was so chaotic — people were running away from bombs, people were separated.”
Veldkamp noted that children were in school when the attack began; some were taken or ran away. So far, some parents do not know where their children are located.
Furthermore, others were kidnapped, and those who escaped to Armenia currently have no homes or belongings.
“The needs are just completely overwhelming,” Veldkamp said. “Armenia’s population has increased by 4 percent in a week, and these are all people who left and left everything behind.”
One growing concern from the attack is that Azerbaijan could invade Armenia as a whole.
“The threat of another war is very real, especially now that the world is distracted again with the crisis in Israel,” Veldkamp said. “Azerbaijan has been attacking Armenians for seven years straight, and no one has ever [put] consequences on them for it, so why would they stop now?”
Earlier this month, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken reportedly warned lawmakers about Azerbaijan's potential invasion of Armenia in the coming weeks.
Photo Courtesy: ©Getty Images/Astrig Agopian / Stringer
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for Christian Headlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.
LISTEN: On the Frontlines of Missionary Work
The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of Salem Web Network and Salem Media Group.