Russia urges Karabakh conflict sides to follow ceasefire agreements (UPDATE)
Headline changed, details added (first version posted on 13:56)
Baku, Azerbaijan, Apr. 11
Russia calls on the sides of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict to follow ceasefire agreements, RIA Novosti quoted the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov as saying Apr. 11.
"We are concerned over the escalation of situation in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone," said the Russian FM. "We call on the sides to comply with the agreements on an immediate cessation of armed clashes and to prevent the breach of the agreement."
Lavrov also said Moscow is interested in seeing positive developments towards an agreement on the conflict's settlement.
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.
Military operations were stopped on the line of contact between Azerbaijani and Armenian armies on Apr. 5 at 12:00 (UTC/GMT + 4 hours) with the consent of the sides, Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry earlier said. Ignoring the agreement, the Armenian side again started violating the ceasefire.
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.
Edited by EA