A cameraman for an Armenian television station was wounded late on Wednesday when a car carrying him came under fire near the Armenian-Azerbaijani “line of contact” in Nagorno-Karabakh.
Davit Atoyan was part of a Shant TV crew that was visiting Karabakh Armenian army positions in the north of the disputed territory on assignment. He was reportedly shot in the leg and underwent surgery in a military hospital in Stepanakert.
“The car was shot at from a long-range sniper rifle,” Vitali Balasanian, a senior Karabakh security official, told RFE/RL’s Armenian service (Azatutyun.am).
Another official in Stepanakert, Davit Babayan, said that Azerbaijani troops stationed nearby deliberately targeted the civilian vehicle. “They knew that it is carrying journalists,” he claimed.
According to the APA news agency, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry claimed that its frontline troops shot at a “camouflaged vehicle of the armed forces of Armenia” in response to gunfire coming from it.
Ceasefire violations at this and other sections of “the line of contact” intensified in the first two months of this year. They appear to have been less frequent since the end of March.
Still, daily reports by Karabakh’s Armenian-backed Defense Army suggest that tensions on the frontlines have somewhat increased in the past week. A statement by the army said that Azerbaijani forces fired a dozen rounds from mortars and light cannons at its positions in northeastern Karabakh on Wednesday and early Thursday.