BAKU, Azerbaijan, March 8. Russian peacekeepers, temporarily deployed on the territory of Azerbaijan's Karabakh Economic Region, are turning a blind eye to the illegal cargo transportation from Armenia to the territory of Azerbaijan, a US expert, strategic adviser on international affairs and public diplomacy to governments, universities, and corporations in Europe and the Americas, Peter Tase told Trend.
"Armenian Fascist armed forces are making every effort to obliterate the peace process in the Caucasus Region. The March 5th armed clashes provoked by Armenian soldiers are a blatant act of violence that violate all norms of International Law and Humanitarian Laws; these provocations happened inside a territory that is temporarily controlled by the Russian Peace Keeping Forces and Moscow’s presence, once again, in an egregious manner gave to Armenian thugs a blank check. Russia’s silence and collaborationist behavior in favor of the Armenian fascist government is observed constantly," he said.
Tase noted that Azerbaijan has every right to defend its own sovereign territory and the Armed Forces of Azerbaijan are handling the regional security challenges with a high level of professionalism, resolve and integrity.
According to him, the international community must exert pressure and impose economic sanctions against Yerevan’s autocratic regime.
US analyst Irina Zuckerman told Trend that this incident illustrates more than anything else how the Russian peacekeeping forces are turning a blind eye to provocations or outright instigating them.
"First, I'd like to express my condolences for these completely unnecessary and tragic losses. It is no coincidence that this incident took place immediately after Azerbaijan proposed establishing mutual checkpoints. This information should be publicized widely to counter disinformation and miscommunications on this subject," she said.
Zuckerman said that unfortunately, the Armenian lobbying machine is so obsessed with undermining Baku that they do not see their own interests.
"Armenians should have the most interest in cooperating with Azerbaijan. The sooner measures are taken to protect the diplomatic process from external interference, the more likely it is to succeed faster," she concluded.
On March 5, the Armenian side once again committed a provocation.
The Defense Ministry of Azerbaijan said that operational information has been received on the transportation of military equipment, ammunition, and personnel from the Republic of Armenia to the territory of Azerbaijan, where the Russian peacekeeping contingent is temporarily deployed, along the Khankendi-Khalfali-Turshsu dirt road.
On the morning of March 5, in order to verify the information received, Azerbaijani Army units attempted to detain and inspect vehicles engaged in illegal military transportation. The fire was opened from the opposite side, and as a result of the shoot-out, there are dead and wounded on both sides.
Earlier as well, the facts of the transportation of ammunition and other military equipment, including mines, fuel, and manpower, from Armenia to the Karabakh Economic Region were established.
The Azerbaijani side has repeatedly warned the international community about the transportation of mines along the mentioned route.