Fighting in Azerbaijan: a military operation was launched in Nagorno-Karabakh

Today (Tuesday) Azerbaijan embarked on an operation in Nagorno-Karabakh – a de facto independent political entity that unilaterally declared its separation from Azerbaijan and its independence as the “Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh”.

Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Defense said the country’s army had begun “anti-terrorist” operations in the Nagorno-Karabakh region, which is under Armenian control. Tensions have been high for months around the region. 11 policemen and citizens of Azerbaijan were reported killed in a mine explosion and another incident.

Defense officials in Nagorno-Karabakh said that the Azerbaijani army “violated the ceasefire along the contact line with artillery missile attacks.” Other Karabakh representatives spoke of a “large-scale military offensive.” The two neighbors, Azerbaijan and Armenia, went to war twice over Nagorno-Karabakh, first in the early 1990s after the fall of the Soviet Union and again in 2020.

Since December, Azerbaijan has imposed a closure of the only route into the area known as the “Lachin Corridor”. The Ministry of Defense in Baku accused Armenian forces of “systematic shelling” of its army positions and said it responded by launching “local, anti-terrorist activities” to disarm and ensure the withdrawal of Armenia’s armed forces.

Russia’s foreign ministry said it was warned of the Azerbaijani attack only minutes in advance and called on both countries to respect the ceasefire signed after the war in 2020. The EU’s regional special representative, Tuivo Klar, said there was an “urgent need for an immediate ceasefire”.

During the six-week conflict in 2020, Azerbaijan recaptured territories surrounding Karabakh that had been held by Armenia since 1994. Azerbaijan has denied moving troops into the area. On Monday, it allowed aid from the International Committee of the Red Cross into Karabakh on two roads, one through Armenia’s Lakhin Corridor and the other through Azerbaijan’s Ajdem Road.

By Editor

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