An Azerbaijani soldier was shot and killed overnight by ethnic Armenian forces near the disputed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh, Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry said Saturday.
The soldier was killed by Armenian fire near the Fizuli region along the so-called line of control separating Azerbaijani and Karabakh forces, Azerbaijani Defense Ministry spokesman Ramiz Melikov said.
Senor Asratian, a spokesman for the Nagorno-Karabakh military, denied the shelling. "Nagorno-Karabakh has staunchly adhered to the cease-fire" in place since 1994, he said.
On Wednesday, Armenian officials accused Azerbaijani forces of fatally wounding an Armenian soldier near Nagorno-Karabakh.
Regular skirmishes along a buffer zone around the enclave underscore persistent tensions in Nagorno-Karabakh, the mountainous territory that is in Azerbaijan but has been controlled - along with some surrounding areas – by Karabakh and Armenian forces since 1994. A shaky cease-fire in 1994 ended the six-year conflict, in which 30,000 people were killed and about 1 million driven from their homes. Attempts to resolve the conflict have failed.