Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. 12
By Leman Zeynalova - Trend:
The attempted provocation by the Armenian Armed Forces on the Azerbaijan-Armenia state border on Feb. 11 testifies again to Armenia's policy to impede the peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, spokesman for the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry, Hikmat Hajiyev told Trend Feb. 12.
"Practice shows that the Armenian side resorts to provocations if during the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs' visits to the region specific issues related to settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict are discussed," he said.
“We once again witnessed that in June-July 2017, after the visit of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs to the region, the Armenian side committed military and political provocations,” Hajiyev said. “As a result of the provocations on July 4 in Alkhanli village of Azerbaijan’s Fizuli district, two-year-old girl Zahra Guliyeva was killed together with her grandmother.”
"Armenia aims to hamper the negotiation process in every possible way,” he said. “This once again shows that the presence of the Armenian Armed Forces in the occupied Azerbaijani territories remains a serious threat to regional security and peace."
“To achieve progress in the political settlement of the conflict, it is necessary to ensure the withdrawal of Armenian troops from the occupied Azerbaijani lands and change the current status quo," Hajiyev said.
Azerbaijan prevented a provocation by Armenia near the Gazakh district on Feb. 11. The provocation aimed to violate the Azerbaijan-Armenia state border.
On Feb. 11 morning, taking advantage of the foggy weather, Armenian servicemen attempted to cross the Azerbaijani army positions. A UAZ vehicle with the Armenian Armed Forces’ reconnaissance and sabotage group inside, moving in the direction of Azerbaijani positions, was timely detected. As a result of Azerbaijan’s preventive actions, the attempt of the Armenian reconnaissance and sabotage group to move ahead was prevented. The group abandoned the vehicle and hurried back to its positions. The sabotage group also opened fire at the vehicle, destroying it, while retreating.
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.