France, Russia urge Karabakh conflict parties to stop military operations
Baku, Azerbaijan, Apr.5
President of French Senate Gerard Larcher and Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov discussed the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, RIA Novosti reported.
Gerard Larcher, who is on a visit to Russia, told reporters that Moscow and Paris urge both parties of the conflict to immediately stop the military operations.
He recalled that France is one of the co-chairing countries of the OSCE Minsk Group for resolving the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts. The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.
On the night of April 2, 2016, all the frontier positions of Azerbaijan were subjected to heavy fire from the Armenian side, which used large-caliber weapons, mortars and grenade launchers.
The armed clashes resulted in deaths and injuries among the Azerbaijani population.
Azerbaijan responded with a counter-attack, which led to liberation of several strategic heights and settlements. More than 370 Armenian soldiers, 12 tanks, 12 armored vehicles and 15 artillery guns have been destroyed from April 2 until today.
Edited by SI