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The Dynamics of Civilian Victimization in the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict

Open Panel

Abstract

There exists a huge amount of literature providing detailed insight into the factors influencing the onset and duration of civil wars. Studies, however, often overlook a concomitant phenomenon of civil war: civilian victimization. Studies investigating strategic dynamics of civilian victimization, more precisely of one-sided violence against civilians, are seldom and the question why perpetrators intentionally kill and harm civilians lack the attention of current research. Thus, this paper makes an effort to fill this academic gap and, hence, examines the phenomenon of civilian victimization from two related theoretical angles suggested in the literature: from a strategic logic and from an international sanctioning logic. The premise of the strategic logic is the influence of the difference in strength between the warring parties and the idea of revenge. The international sanctioning logic highlights the role and power of the international community in preventing the occurrence of one-sided violence. In this paper, one-sided violence in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia for the period of 1990 until 1997 will be explored. Time series analysis will be conducted in order to examine the dynamics of civilian victimization in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.