Azerbaijan Issues - 2023


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Disputes - international

Local border forces struggle to control the illegal transit of goods and people across the porous, undemarcated Armenian, Azerbaijani, and Georgian borders.

Armenia-Azerbaijan: The dispute over the break-away Nagorno-Karabakh region and the Armenian military occupation of surrounding lands in Azerbaijan remains the primary focus of regional instability. Residents have evacuated the former Soviet-era small ethnic enclaves in Armenia and Azerbaijan.

Azerbaijan-Georgia: A joint boundary commission agrees on most of the alignment, leaving only small areas at certain crossing points in dispute.  Consequently, the two states have yet to agree on a delimitation or demarcation of their common boundary. One area of contention is where the international boundary should run through the 6th-13th Century David-Gareja monastery complex.

Azerbaijan-Iran: none identified

Azerbaijan-Russia: Russia complains of cross-border smuggling.

Azerbaijan-Turkey: none identified

Caspian Sea (Maritime Boundary): Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Russia ratified the Caspian seabed delimitation treaties based on equidistance, while Iran continues to insist on a one-fifth slice of the sea. Bilateral talks continue with Turkmenistan on dividing the seabed and contested oilfields in the middle of the Caspian.

Refugees and internally displaced persons

IDPs: 655,000 (conflict with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh; IDPs are mainly ethnic Azerbaijanis but also include ethnic Kurds, Russians, and Turks predominantly from occupied territories around Nagorno-Karabakh; includes IDPs' descendants, returned IDPs, and people living in insecure areas and excludes people displaced by natural disasters; around half the IDPs live in the capital Baku) (2021)

stateless persons: 3,585 (2022)

Illicit drugs

limited illicit cultivation of cannabis and opium poppy, mostly for CIS consumption; small government eradication program; transit point for Southwest Asian opiates bound for Russia and to a lesser extent the rest of Europe

NOTE: The information regarding Azerbaijan on this page is re-published from the 2023 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Azerbaijan 2023 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Azerbaijan 2023 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 06 Dec 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.