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Karabakh Fighting Continues Despite New Ceasefire Deal


NAGORNO-KARABAKH -- A destroyed infantry fighting vehicle is seen on the road during the military conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh, October 15, 2020

Armenia accused Azerbaijan of resuming offensive military operations around Nagorno-Karabakh on Sunday morning just hours after the entry into force of another ceasefire agreement reached by the two sides.

Armenian Defense Ministry spokeswoman Shushan Stepanian said Azerbaijani forces shelled Karabakh Armenian army positions overnight before launching a fresh offensive in a bid to “occupy favorable positions” along the Iranian border south of Karabakh.

The Azerbaijani Defense Ministry said its troops took “adequate measures” in response to Armenian shelling of and attacks on their positions and are “carrying out appropriate actions along the entire frontline.”

Stepanian denounced the Azerbaijani actions as a “blatant violation” of a humanitarian ceasefire agreed by the two sides late on Saturday. Hostilities in the conflict zone were due to stop at midnight.

Armenia and Azerbaijan had also reached such an agreement on October 10 during talks in Moscow mediated by Russia. Fighting along the Armenian-Azerbaijani “line of contact” did not stop, however, with each side accusing the other of not respecting the deal.

“This is the second time that Azerbaijan violates the ceasefire agreement achieved through the personal mediation of the leader of an OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chair country [Russia,] thus demonstrating to the international community its treacherous nature, which we have been dealing with for decades,” the Armenian Foreign Ministry charged in a statement.

“Armenia will continue to undertake all necessary measures to impose peace on Azerbaijan and establish a ceasefire regime which will entail precise and effective mechanisms for maintaining and verifying it on the ground,” it said.

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