The Ministry of Defense of Azerbaijan announced today, Wednesday, that 7 of its soldiers were killed in the latest military confrontations with Armenia, while Baku and Yerevan exchanged accusations about the cause of the incident.
The Azerbaijan News Agency quoted the ministry as saying that two officers and 5 soldiers were killed and 10 others were wounded in the clashes that took place on Tuesday near the Nagorno-Karabakh region, large parts of which were recaptured last year by the Azerbaijani forces after a 6-week war with the Armenian forces and militiamen loyal to them.
The ministry confirmed that the Armenian attack had failed to achieve its goals, noting that calm had prevailed in the region since Tuesday evening.
Yesterday, the Armenian parliament announced the killing of 15 Armenian soldiers in shelling on the border with Azerbaijan.
The Armenian Ministry of Defense confirmed the injury of a number of soldiers and the capture of Baku 12 Armenian soldiers in the border clashes between the two countries.
Yerevan also said that it lost two military positions in the clashes, which stopped on Tuesday evening, the most violent since the end of the war between the two countries last year.
The Russian Defense Ministry had announced that Armenia and Azerbaijan had halted the clashes between them in the border region of Mount Kilisali after negotiations conducted by Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu with the defense ministers of the two countries.
The statement of the Russian Defense Ministry said that as a result of the phone calls that Shoigu had with his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts, the two sides took measures to stabilize the situation.
The two countries exchanged accusations over the cause of the recent clashes, and while Yerevan said that the Azerbaijani forces had taken the initiative to open fire on Armenian military positions, Baku stated that the confrontations erupted due to Armenian provocations that took place on a large scale on the border.
The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry blamed the Armenian leadership for the escalation between the two sides, and said that the recent border clashes were a military provocation by Armenia.
For his part, Armenia’s delegate to the United Nations, Mir Margaryan, called on the international community to take urgent and effective steps to prevent further escalation on his country’s borders with Azerbaijan.
Margarian also called – during an open session of the UN Security Council on preventive diplomacy – international actors to demand the unconditional and complete withdrawal of Azerbaijani forces from what he described as the territory of Armenia.
On the other hand, Azerbaijan’s representative to the United Nations, Yasar Aliyev, said that his country responded appropriately to the armed provocations by Armenia on the border.
Aliyev stressed that Azerbaijan is confident that there is no alternative to the normalization of relations between the two countries on the basis of mutual recognition of each other’s sovereignty over its territories, in accordance with internationally recognized borders.
Tensions have escalated continuously in the past weeks between the two countries, despite the signing of a ceasefire agreement and the deployment of Russian peacekeeping forces after the clashes in 2020.
And in the fall of last year, Armenia and Azerbaijan fought a short war – which left more than 6,500 dead – over the Nagorno-Karabakh region, which was the cause of their first bloody conflict in the 1990s.
These battles ended with the victory of Azerbaijan, and forcing Armenia to cede several areas in and around the territory, which Azerbaijan asserts that part of its territory was occupied by Armenia.