Armenia: Information on the status of ethnic Armenians who fled to Armenia from Azerbaijan on 23 August 1990, and whether such Armenians were required to have propiskas for Armenia in order to be considered residents
|Publisher||Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada|
|Author||Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada|
|Publication Date||1 September 1994|
|Citation / Document Symbol||AMN18190.E|
|Cite as||Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Armenia: Information on the status of ethnic Armenians who fled to Armenia from Azerbaijan on 23 August 1990, and whether such Armenians were required to have propiskas for Armenia in order to be considered residents, 1 September 1994, AMN18190.E, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/3ae6ac2d70.html [accessed 29 August 2014]|
|Disclaimer||This is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.|
An attaché at the Embassy of Armenia in Washington, DC provided the following information on the above subjects during a telephone interview on 12 September 1994.
Ethnic Armenians who fled to Armenia from Azerbaijan in August 1990 were considered to be refugees, and were not considered citizens or permanent residents of Armenia. Although Armenia did not have a citizenship law to deal with the status of such refugees at that time, some of these Armenians applied for citizenship. Armenian authorities granted citizenship status to all the members of a family who applied for citizenship if one of the parents was a citizen of Armenia. Families whose heads were both citizens of Azerbaijan were not entitled to Armenian citizenship.
Since most of the ethnic Armenians who fled to Armenia from Azerbaijan did not have ID cards or money, Armenian authorities issued them ID certificates. These ID certificates, which were "a kind of propiska," enabled these ethnic Armenians to receive necessities such as food coupons, housing and so forth. The issuance of such ID cards did not change their status in Armenia and they were still considered refugees. The attaché maintains that the final status of these refugees can be determined when Armenia adopts a citizenship law.
The attaché explains that propiskas are stamps that are placed in internal passports when a person registers with his or her local authorities. People are required to be registered with the authorities of the area where they live; a propiska only indicates that its holder resides in a specific area. The attaché adds that an internal passport is a "sign of citizenship."
For additional information on the status of ethnic Armenians who fled to Armenia from Azerbijan in 1990 and residence requirements for ethnic Armenians in Armenia, please refer to Responses to Information Requests AMN18188 and AMN18189 both of 12 September 1994.
This response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the DIRB within time constraints. This response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.
Embassy of Armenia, Washington, DC. 12 September 1994. Telephone interview with attaché.