Qubadli (Qubadly, Ghubatlu, Kashunik, Gubadli)
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Qubadli (Qubadly, Ghubatlu, Kubatly, Kubadly, Kashunik) -  Azerbaijan - location mapQubadli is located on the south-western part of Azerbaijan, near Armenia and heads a district (rayon) of 802 sq. km that stretches along the border. The rayon comprises some pre-alpine landscape with very beautiful areas, in particular along the Vorotan and Hakari rivers. The entire district was lost to Armenian forces in 1993 and has remained under the control of the Nagorno Karabakh Defence Forces ever since. The population was moved west, part is spread across Azerbaijan but many still live in refugee camps near along the cease fire line.

In 1923 Qubadli became part of the newly formed Autonomous Region of Red Kurdistan, with capital in Lachin. In 1930 - upon Stalin's liquidation of Red Kurdistan the area became part of the Zangelan district. Some Armenian population lived in parts of the rayon till the first quarter of the 18th century, afterwards it was occupied by nomadic Muslim tribes.

The Kurds still dwelled in tents till at least 1825, but later moved to the Armenian and Azeri villages and within 60 years (1885) passed to the settled mode of life. Thus the first Kurdish villages, the number of which increased considerably during the Soviet period, were established between 1825 and 1885.

Qubadli does not border the Nagorno Karabakh territory and is not claimed by the Armenians, as such it is currently occupied as part of their 'buffer zone' and left derelict and abandoned. The town has been "cannibalized" for all kinds of materials and is now in a sorry state. In the district several ruined churces and fortresses are worth a visit.

In the present cold peace climate, in order to reach Qubadli you must go trough Armenia. This should not be very difficult as the Nagorno-Karabakh  (Artsakh for the Armenians) region is eager to welcome tourists. See the section on visas, for details.

(375 km south-west of Baku)
see also: places, maps, Fizuli, Zangilan, Lachin, Xankandi, Nagorno-Karabakh, Nakhchivan, Kurdish, summary, images
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