Fighting erupts between Armenia, Azerbaijan in disputed area

Понедельник, 28 Сен, 2020

The Nagorno Karabakh Defense Army said on Sunday, September 27 that two helicopters, as many as 14 drones, as well as tanks and armored vehicles belonging to the Azerbaijani military have been destroyed since early morning.

"I call on the personnel attached to the troops to present themselves to their district commissariats", Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said on his social media platform on Sunday.

Azerbaijan's state news agency Azertac reported that Armenia's 12 air-defense missile systems were destroyed while one military helicopter of Azerbaijan was shot down during the clashes.

Mostly mountainous Nagorno-Karabakh - a region some 4,400 square kilometers (1,700 square miles) or about the size of the USA state of DE - lies 50 kilometers (30 miles) from the Armenian border. "Armenia has violated the ceasefire by attacking civilian settlements. the worldwide community must immediately say stop to this risky provocation".

Armenia said Azeri forces had attacked civilian targets including Nagorno-Karabakh's capital, Stepanakert, and promised a "proportionate response". Lavrov also spoke separately by phone with the Armenian and Azeri foreign ministers, emphasizing the need for an immediate cease-fire, the ministry said.

The pope appealed to Armenia and Azerbaijan to resolve their differences through negotiations, saying he was praying for peace. Hikmet Hajiyev, a senior adviser to Aliyev, accused Armenian forces of launching "deliberate and targeted" attacks along the front line.

Pakistan on Sunday said it was deeply concerned about the deteriorating security situation in Nagorno-Karabakh region after Armenian forces' fired shells on Azerbaijan's civilian populations over the weekend.

The two countries have always been at odds over Nagorno-Karabakh, which broke away from Azerbaijan in a conflict that broke out as the Soviet Union collapsed.

A still from footage shows blurry tank being engulfed in fire and black smoke
Both Armenia and Azerbaijan blamed each other for the attack

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also reported Sunday that a group of Syrian fighters of Turkish-backed factions has arrived in Azerbaijan from Turkey.

Azerbaijan's "authoritarian regime has once again declared war on the Armenian people", he added.

Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin also took to Twitter to condemn Armenia.

Clashes between Armenia and Azerbaijan have begun over the long-running conflict over the Nagorno-Karabakh region. It was not immediately clear what sparked the fighting, the heaviest since clashes in July killed over a dozen people from both sides.

Relations between the two former Soviet nations have been tense since 1991 when Armenian military seized control of Upper Karabakh, or Nagorno-Karabakh, an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan.

During the worst recent clashes in April 2016, around 110 people were killed.

"The Trump administration also needs to step up its diplomatic efforts, together with fellow OSCE [Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe] Minsk Group co-chairs France and Russian Federation, to seek a peaceful resolution and to support confidence-building measures, Biden said".