Azerbaijan says it controls several positions in Nagorno-Karabakh

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Baku claimed control on Wednesday August 3 of several positions and destroyed Armenian targets in Nagorno-Karabakh, during an escalation that left three dead and revived the risk of war in the mountainous enclave.

Control is established at several important heights including hills, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry said in a statement, adding that its forces are strengthening positions.

On Wednesday, August 3, both sides reported the death of at least two Armenian fighters and an Azerbaijani soldier in clashes around Karabakh, reviving a new war after 2020 in this disputed enclave between Azerbaijan and Armenia. These incidents also risk weighing on the peace talks that have been taking place for months between the two countries with the mediation of the European Union.

On Wednesday, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry announced the death of a conscript after “heavy fire” targeted an Azerbaijani army position in the Lachin district, a buffer zone between the border with Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh. . Azerbaijan claims to have retaliated in an operation called “Revenge”, in which ” many combat positions of illegal armed elements of Armenia were destroyed “.

Two members of Armenian separatist forces were killed and 14 injured in an Azerbaijani drone strike, the enclave’s authorities said, denouncing a ” flagrant violation of the ceasefire “.

Armenia appeals to the international community

Armenia” calls on the international community to take steps to stop Azerbaijan’s aggressive behavior and actions and to mobilize the necessary mechanisms to do so the Armenian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Russia accused Azerbaijan of violating the ceasefire in the enclave on Wednesday, adding that its peacekeepers deployed in the region sought to ” STRENGTHEN ” the situation. The Russian Defense Ministry added in a statement that ” the command of the Russian peacekeeping force, together with the representatives of Azerbaijan and Armenia, took steps to stabilize the situation “.

For its part, the European Union called on Wednesday for ” immediate cessation of hostilities “. ” It is important to de-escalate, fully respect the ceasefire and return to the negotiating table to find negotiated solutions “said the spokesperson of the head of European diplomacy Josep Borrell in a press release.

Tension remains high

In a sign of rising tensions, the leader of Nagorno-Karabakh separatists, Arayik Haroutiounian, signed a decree on Wednesday declaring a partial military mobilization in this territory, according to the presidency’s website. After the first war that killed more than 30,000 people in the early 1990s, Armenia and Azerbaijan fighting again in the fall of 2020 for control of Nagorno-Karabakh, a mountainous region that, supported by Yerevan, seceded from Azerbaijan. More than 6,500 people died in this new war lost in Armenia.

As part of a ceasefire agreement brokered by Moscow, which deployed peacekeepers to Nagorno-Karabakh, Yerevan ceded significant territory to Azerbaijan. This ceasefire agreement was experienced as a humiliation in Armenia, where many opposition parties have demanded since the resignation of Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian, whom they accused of making many concessions to Baku.

Despite a tentative diplomatic truce between Armenia and Azerbaijan, tensions remain high between the two former Soviet republics. Both countries regularly report outbreaks of violence and casualties among soldiers. Under the mediation of the European Union, the two countries are conducting negotiations to reach a peace agreement.

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(With AFP)

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