Azerbaijani forces on Thursday opened fire at farmers in Artsakh, while official Baku threatened further military acts to halt what it claims are illegal arms transfers by Armenia to Karabakh.
Throughout Thursday Azerbaijani forces opened fire on farmers working in vineyards in the Berdashen and Taghavard villages of Artsakh’s Martuni region. The gun fire began at 8:30 a.m. local time and continued again at 10:40 a.m. A third such attack was registered later that afternoon.
The Russian peacekeeping forces confirmed ceasefire violation incidents in the Martuni region.
In Berdashen, Hayk Zargaryan, Senorik Alaverdyan and Gennady Sargsyan, came under fire, while in Taghavard six farmers – Artur Firyan, Ararat Alaverdyan, Shura Alaverdyan, Oleg Harutyunyan, Arsen Khachatryan and Novik Gabrielyan – were attacked.
Meanwhile, Azerbaijan again threatened to take action “to halt the supply of arms from Armenia to Karabakh.”
“The Armenian side must completely withdraw its forces from Azerbaijan’s territory and end its territorial claims from Azerbaijan,” said Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry spokesperson on Thursday.
Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan told his cabinet on Thursday that under the false claims of arms transfer to Artsakh, Azerbaijan is attempting to justify future armed escalation in the area.
“Armenia does not transfer any arms to Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia does have armed forces in Nagorno-Karabakh,” Pashinyan said, again proposing the deployment of an international fact-finding mission in Artsakh.
Baku countered by saying that Armenia has no right to interfere in Azerbaijan’s internal issues.
“Instead of attempting to send international organizations and interfering in our country’s internal affairs, Armenia should carry out the responsibilities it has assumed,” Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry said.