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Armenia, Azerbaijan Keep Up Deadly Fight For Disputed Region

In this photo provided by the Azerbaijan's Presidential Press Office provided on Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev addresses the nation in Baku, Azerbaijan. Fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan broke out Sunday around the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh and the Armenian Defense Ministry said two Azerbaijani helicopters were shot down. Ministry spokeswoman Shushan Stepanyan also said Armenian forces hit three Azerbaijani tanks. (Azerbaijani Presidential Press Office via AP)

In this photo provided by the Azerbaijan's Presidential Press Office provided on Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev addresses the nation in Baku, Azerbaijan. Fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan broke out Sunday around the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh and the Armenian Defense Ministry said two Azerbaijani helicopters were shot down. Ministry spokeswoman Shushan Stepanyan also said Armenian forces hit three Azerbaijani tanks. (Azerbaijani Presidential Press Office via AP)

Armenia and Azerbaijani forces kept fighting Monday over the disputed separatist region of NagornoKarabakh after hostilities broke out the day before, with both sides blaming each other for resuming the deadly attacks.

YEREVAN, Armenia: Armenian and Azerbaijani forces fought over the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh for a second day Monday, with both sides blaming each other for resuming the attacks that reportedly killed and wounded dozens as the decades-old conflict has reignited.

The Azerbaijani Defense Ministry claimed Armenian forces shelled the town of Tartar, while Armenian officials said the fighting continued overnight and Baku resumed offensive actions” in the morning.

Azerbaijani military officials told the Interfax news agency that over 550 Armenian troops have been destroyed (including those wounded) in a claim that Armenia denied.

According to officials in the predominantly Armenian enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh, 58 servicemen on their side have been killed so far. Initially, the list of killed soldiers from the territory’s Defense Ministry had 59 names on it, but officials later said one man on the list was wounded, not killed.

On Sunday, the ministry also reported two civilian deaths a woman and her grandchild.

About 200 people have been wounded, the Armenian Defense Ministry said, while Azerbaijani authorities said six civilians were killed and 26 wounded on their side. Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev said Sunday there were losses among Baku’s forces, too, but he didn’t elaborate.

The heavy fighting broke out Sunday in the region that lies within Azerbaijan but has been under the control of ethnic Armenian forces backed by the Yerevan government since 1994 at the end of a separatist war.

Azerbaijan said it destroyed two Armenian tanks, and Nagorno-Karabakh’s Defense Ministry reported that Baku lost 10 armored vehicles in a tank battle.

The Armenian Defense Ministry said that, while the fighting continued, all offensives of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces were successfully repelled, the enemy was thrown back” and suffered losses.

Nagorno-Karabakh a region in the Caucasus Mountains about 4,400 square kilometers (1,700 square miles) or about the size of the U.S. state of Delaware is 50 kilometers (30 miles) from the Armenian border. Soldiers backed by Armenia also occupy some Azerbaijani territory outside the region.

The European Union urged both sides to stop fighting and return to the negotiating table, following similar calls by Iran, Russia, France and the United States.

We hope and we urge everyone to everything they can in order to prevent an all-out war from breaking out, because this is the last thing the region needs, European Commission spokesman Peter Stano said in Brussels. There is no military solution to this conflict.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the situation is a cause for concern for Moscow and other countries.

We believe that the hostilities should be immediately ended,” Peskov said, adding that the process of resolving the conflict should shift into a politico-diplomatic dimension.

Armenia’s Foreign Ministry accused Turkey, which sides with Azerbaijan in the conflict, of supporting this aggression.

Turkish military experts are fighting side by side with Azerbaijan, who are using Turkish weapons, including UAVs and warplanes,” the ministry said. The situation clearly indicates that people in Nagorno-Karabakh are fighting against “a Turkish-Azerbaijani alliance, the statement said.

Both Armenia and Turkey accused each other of recruiting foreign mercenaries.

Omer Celik, spokesman for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogans ruling party, denied reports that Turkey had sent arms or foreign fighters to Azerbaijan.

Armenia is disturbed by Turkeys solidarity with Azerbaijan and is producing lies against Turkey, Celik tweeted.

Erdogan reiterated Turkeys support for Azerbaijan and said Armenias immediate withdrawal from the region was the only way to ensure peace.

“All other impositions and threats will not only be unjust and unlawful, but will continue to indulge Armenia, he said.

Erdogan criticized France, the U.S. and Russia the three chairs of the so-called Minsk group that was set up in 1992 to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict saying they had failed to resolve the issue for 30 years.

They have done their best not to solve this issue. And now they come and counsel and issue threats. They say is Turkey here, is the Turkish military here?” Erdogan said.

Whose lands were occupied? Azerbaijans lands. … Nobody asks for (Armenia) to account. Azerbaijan has been forced to take the matters into its own hands,” he added.

Associated Press writers Daria Litvinova in Moscow, Lorne Cook in Brussels and Suzan Fraser in Ankara contributed.

Disclaimer: This post has been auto-published from an agency feed without any modifications to the text and has not been reviewed by an editor


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