Azerbaijan launched an attack against separatist groups in Nagorno-Karabakh, the area disputed with Armenia


Azerbaijan said Tuesday that it launched “anti-terrorist operations” in Nagorno-Karabakhalmost three years after going to war over the disputed mountain region with Armenia.

“Local anti-terrorist operations have begun in the region”The Defense Ministry in Baku said, adding that it was using “high-precision weapons on the front line and in depth” as part of the operations.

Defense indicated that this operation seeks to “guarantee compliance with the provisions of the three-way declaration” between Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russiawhich ended the 2020 war, in which Baku recovered much of the territories lost during the first conflict in Nagorno Karabakh.

Azerbaijan noted that the “anti-terrorist” actions are intended to “expel the armed formations of Armenia” from Azerbaijani territories, “neutralize its military infrastructure, guarantee the security of the civilian population” and restore constitutional order.

The Ministry of Defense announced the start of the operation after the death of six Azerbaijanis – two civilians and four police officers – as a result of the explosion of two mines in the Karabakh region, and an attack with mortars and light weapons in the Agdam region , where the Russian peace contingent is located.

The Prime Minister of Armenia, Nikol Pashinian.  Europa Press/Contact/Iranian Presidency
The Prime Minister of Armenia, Nikol Pashinian. Europa Press/Contact/Iranian Presidency (Europa Press/Contact/Iranian Pr/)

Baku blamed these incidents on “a sabotage group of illegal Armenian military formations” and opened a criminal case for terrorism, premeditated murder based on ethnic hatred, and illegal possession of weapons and explosives.

Nagorno Karabakh, self-proclaimed independent in 1991, has since been the bone of contention between Armenia and Azerbaijanwho fought two wars, one in the early 1990s that ended with the Armenian victory and another in 2020, in which the Azerbaijanis won.

The territory belongs under International Law to Azerbaijan, but ethnic Armenians live there.

As a result of the most recent 44-day war, Baku recovered more than two-thirds of territory in the mountainous region and its surroundings that had been declared a security zone by Yerevan, although Armenia had to maintain communication with the enclave through the corridor of Lachin, blocked by Azerbaijan for nine months.

Tensions between Azerbaijan and Armenia have increased in recent days, amid reports of troop movements on both sides, and threaten to overturn the ceasefire reached in 2020 with Russian mediation.

(With information from AFP and EFE)