Two Armenian and at least one Azerbaijani soldiers were killed on Thursday in continuing ceasefire violations along “the line of contact” around Nagorno-Karabakh.
The Karabakh Armenian military said two of its soldiers, Ararat Khanoyan and Ashot Asoyan, died while repelling an Azerbaijani assault on their outpost in northern Karabakh. A statement released by it claimed that the Azerbaijani side suffered “numerous casualties” and abandoned a “large quantity of special weaponry and technical means” during the retreat. It did not elaborate.
The Azerbaijani Defense Ministry denied launching any incursions or suffering losses in that area. Still, it reported later in the day that one of its soldiers, Garyagdi Ahmedov, was killed at an unspecified section of the frontline. According to the APA news agency, the ministry insisted that Ahmedov was shot dead by an Armenian sniper “as a result of breaching safety rules” while on frontline duty.
The deadly truce violations come just two days after Armenian Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian inspected Armenian frontline positions around Karabakh. The Karabakh Defense Army said the visit was part of efforts to thwart increased cross-border incursions by Azerbaijani troops.
On Thursday Ohanian visited Armenian army units deployed along Armenia’s border with Azerbaijan’s Nakhichevan exclave. The army reportedly moved forward its outposts at a section of that mountainous frontier in June. According to news publications close to the Armenian military, roughly 100 square kilometers of neutral or contested territory was placed under Armenian control as a result.