At least 11,557 Azerbaijani soldiers were killed during the 1991-1994 war for Nagorno-Karabakh, military authorities in Azerbaijan have said in first-ever official data on the country’s combat death toll.
The Azerbaijani APA news agency said on Monday that the names of those “martyrs” have been posted on the website of the State Service for Mobilization and Draft. It said among them are soldiers who went missing and are still unaccounted for.
“Although the lists [of dead soldiers] from some districts are not complete, they can be considered the first official data on the number of Azerbaijani servicemen killed in 1991-1994,” explained APA.
Official and non-governmental sources in Baku have long reported conflicting information about Azerbaijan’s war casualties. President Ilham Aliyev said in a 2011 interview with the Al-Jazeera TV network that between 12,000 and 15,000 of his countrymen, including civilians, died or went missing in the bitter war.
His late father and predecessor, Heydar Aliyev, had spoken of some 21,000 Azerbaijani casualties. Some Azerbaijani media outlets and civic groups have cited similar figures.
The Armenian side, which emerged victorious from the bloody conflict, claims to have lost around 7,000 soldiers and over 1,260 civilians, most of them Karabakh Armenians. With the names of those soldiers kept in military records and publicized, this official combat death toll is not disputed by non-governmental sources.