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Azeri Soldier Killed Near Karabakh


Nagorno-Karabakh - Armenian soldiers on frontline duty in the northern Martakert district, 20Jul2012.

Nagorno-Karabakh - Armenian soldiers on frontline duty in the northern Martakert district, 20Jul2012.

An Azerbaijani army soldier was shot dead near Nagorno-Karabakh late on Monday in what the Defense Ministry in Baku called a ceasefire violation by Armenian forces.

Azerbaijani news agencies identified the victim as Kainat Abdullayev. They said the 24-year-old warrant officer was killed near Karabakh’s northeastern edge, at one of the most volatile sections of the Armenian-Azerbaijani “line of contact” around the disputed territory.

The 1news.az news service cited the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry as saying that its troops stationed in the area came under fresh fire from Karabakh Armenian forces on Tuesday.

Karabakh’s Armenian-backed army reported no skirmishes there this week. It earlier accused the Azerbaijani side of repeatedly violating the ceasefire last week. It said more than a thousand gunshots were fired towards its frontline positions from July 21-27.

Dozens of soldiers from both warring sides die each year in truce violations highlighting the risk of another Armenian-Azerbaijani war for Karabakh. International mediators have repeatedly expressed concern about such incidents and proposed measures aimed at preventing them.

The proposed confidence-building measures include mutual withdrawal of snipers from frontline positions, an idea largely backed by the Armenian side. Azerbaijan remains opposed to it, however, saying that sniper withdrawal would only cement the status quo.
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