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Baku reports new attacks by Armenia on areas around Nagorno-Karabakh

A building destroyed by shelling in Stepanakert. Photo: Achilleas Zavallis, The Guardian. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

BAKU, Oct 17, 2020, TASS. The Azerbaijani Defense Ministry informed of new attacks of areas around Nagorno-Karabakh by the Armenian side, TASS reported.

“This morning, the Armenian armed forces are shelling the territory of Tartar, Agdam, Barda and Agjabedi districts, blatantly violating the humanitarian ceasefire regime,” the ministry stated.

At the talks held at Russia’s initiative in Moscow, Baku and Yerevan agreed a ceasefire, which came into effect at 12:00 local time on October 10 for humanitarian reasons in order to exchange detainees and the bodies of those killed in the fighting. Shortly after noon, the sides traded blame for violating the ceasefire agreement.

Renewed clashes between Azerbaijan and Armenia erupted on September 27, with intense battles raging in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh. The area experienced flare-ups of violence in the summer of 2014, in April 2016 and this past July. Azerbaijan and Armenia have imposed martial law and launched mobilization efforts. Both parties to the conflict have reported casualties, among them civilians.

The conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, a disputed territory that had been part of Azerbaijan before the Soviet Union break-up, but primarily populated by ethnic Armenians, broke out in February 1988 after the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region announced its withdrawal from the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic. In 1992-1994, tensions boiled over and exploded into large-scale military action for control over the enclave and seven adjacent territories after Azerbaijan lost control of them. Talks on the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement have been ongoing since 1992 under the OSCE Minsk Group, led by its three co-chairs – Russia, France and the United States.

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