Azerbaijani forces have launched attacks on several areas of the border with Armenia, accusing Armenian forces of violating the ceasefire.
In a statement at around 01:00 on Tuesday morning, the Azerbaijani Defence Ministry said the attacks were a response to ‘provocations’ from Armenian ‘saboteurs’.
They accused Armenian units of planting mines in the Kalbajar and Lachin districts, control of both of which was handed to Azerbaijan at the end of the second Nagorno-Karabakh War, as well as Dashkasan District to the north.
The Armenian Ministry of Defence said that at around midnight, Azerbaijani forces attacked Armenian positions in the Syunik, Vayots Dzor, and Gegharkunik provinces from both the east and from the Azerbaijani exclave of Nakhchivan.
They said Azerbaijan was employing artillery and armed drones in their attacks
A reporter from Armenian media outlet CivilNet reported from the southern Syunik Province that artillery shells landed near the city of Goris lighting fields on fire.
In their statement, the Azerbaijani Defence Ministry accused the Armenian media of spreading disinformation, denying reports of attacks on civilian targets.
‘The news spread in the Armenian mass media and social media segment about Azerbaijan’s intervention in the territory of Armenia is nonsense’, their statement said.
‘The presence of personnel and equipment of the Armenian armed forces in the economic zone of Azerbaijan’s Karabakh still continues. Therefore, it is the military and political leadership of Armenia that bears responsibility’, they said.
As the clashes continued, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan held a phone conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
‘Nikol Pashinyan considered the actions of the Azerbaijani side unacceptable and emphasised the importance of the international community’s adequate response’, the Armenian readout of the call reads.
Russia and Armenia have a bilateral defensive pact and both are members of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation. Russia also brokered and co-signed the ceasefire that brought an end to the Second Nagorno-Karabakh War.
The authorities in Stepanakert reported that the situation along the Nagorno-Karabakh line of contact was calm.
For ease of reading, we choose not to use qualifiers such as ‘de facto’, ‘unrecognised’, or ‘partially recognised’ when discussing institutions or political positions within Abkhazia, Nagorno-Karabakh, and South Ossetia. This does not imply a position on their status.