By Emil Danielyan
Azerbaijani security services have arrested a Japanese student of Yerevan State University (YSU) on suspicion of espionage in favor of Armenia, reports from Baku said on Thursday.
The Georgian news agency Caucasus Press reported that the 28-year-old man was held while taking pictures of major buildings in the center of the Azerbaijani capital. It said this fact led the Azerbaijani authorities to suspect that he was spying for the Armenian intelligence.
No details, including the student’s name, were reported. Nor is it known whether he has been formally charged with espionage.
Relevant officials at YSU were not available for comment and it was not immediately clear if there is a Japanese national of that age studying at Armenia’s biggest university.
Armenia and Azerbaijan, still locked in a bitter dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh, have repeatedly traded accusations of espionage over the past decade. Last January, for example, four Armenian citizens of Russian descent were sentenced to between 10 and 15 years in prison after being convicted of spying for Baku. They all denied the treason charges.