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Azerbaijan ‘captures Armenian saboteur’

24 August 2020
The Nagorno-Karabakh line of contact. Photo: Seymur Kazimov/OC Media.

Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Defence has claimed to have captured an Armenian soldier who crossed from Nagorno-Karabakh into Azerbaijan’s Goranboy District.

In a statement on Sunday, Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Defence said that at around 05:45 on Sunday, ‘a sabotage-intelligence group’ of the Armenian Armed Forces ‘attempted to conduct sabotage’ on the line of contact. 

‘As a result of decisive measures taken by units of the Azerbaijani Army located in this direction, the enemy was forced to retreat with losses’.

Azerbaijan has identified the captured soldier as senior lieutenant Gurgin Alberyan who they said led the attempted sabotage.

However, the chief spokesperson of the Armenian Ministry of Defence, Shushan Stepanyan, said that a soldier named Gurgen Alaverdyan had gone missing.

In a post on Facebook on Sunday, Stepanyan denied the allegations of sabotage. 

‘On 22 August at around 19:30, for the purpose of checking a military post, officer Gurgen Alaverdyan became confused and got lost due to unfavourable weather. A search is being conducted’. 

‘The press release of the Ministry of Defence of Azerbaijan about sabotage is misinformation through which the lost officer is presented as a saboteur’, she concluded. 

Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Defence meanwhile claimed that ‘all responsibility for the aggravation of the situation on the front lies directly with the military-political leadership of Armenia’.

The story will be updated.

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