ICRC holds new talks regarding killed Azerbaijani soldier (UPDATE)
details added (first version posted at 11:23)
Baku, Azerbaijan, April 18
By Samir Ali - Trend:
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has started new talks on the handover of an Azerbaijani dead soldier, Spokesperson for ICRC's Delegation in Azerbaijan Ilaha Huseynova told Trend April 18.
Huseynova said that the Azerbaijani soldier was killed during the military operations on preventing Armenia's provocation on the line of contact of both countries' troops (from April 2 to April 5).
"At present, the ICRC continues the dialogue with the sides of the conflict to find Azerbaijani and Armenian servicemen who went missing," Huseynova said. "The dialogue is confidential."
Earlier, the Armenian side disseminated information that an Azerbaijani soldier's body remains in Armenia. Despite the ICRC talks, Armenia refused to hand over the dead body to the Azerbaijani side.
A demonstrative refusal of Armenia to return the body of an Azerbaijani soldier, despite previously reached agreements, is a flagrant violation of international humanitarian law, in particular the Geneva Convention and the provisions of additional protocols, Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hikmat Hajiyev told Trend Apr. 18.
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.