STEPANAKERT, YEREVAN—As heavy fighting continued between Karabakh and Azerbaijani forces on Sunday around the northern and southern borders, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry called for unilateral cease-fire, which was immediately rebuked by both Armenia and the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic as Baku’s efforts at disinformation.
Azerbaijan launched a large-scale attack on Karabakh position on April 1 and 2, killing 18 soldiers and civilians, including a 12-year-old boy, Vaghinak Grigoryan, who was hit by a Grad missile in his schoolyard in Martuni. Two other children, including Grigoryan’s brother were injured in the schoolyard.
In making the call for a unilateral cease-fire, Baku characterized this weekend’s assault on Karabakh as “counterattacking actions” and “reinforcement of liberated territories.”
The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Defense Ministry, in a statement issued on Sunday said that by using the aforementioned terms demonstrated that Baku was not genuine in its announcement and aimed to create an illusion of a cease-fire.
The Artsakh Defense Ministry argued that Azerbaijan orchestrated the large-scale attack on Karabakh border positions and continued to shell Armenian targets, namely the city of Martakert, “from MM-21 volley fire rocket installations and 152 mm cannons after issuing the statement.”
The Artsakh Army said its troops won back a “tactically important” position near the northern village of Talish. “The enemy was pushed back, suffering considerable losses,” it claimed. “Two soldiers from the Karabakh side were wounded during the hostilities.”
“The Nagorno Karabakh Defense Army is ready to meet to discuss the proposal to enact a ceasefire within the context of restoring the original positions of the sides,” said the Artsakh Defense Ministry statement.
The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Defense Army has released a video, to illustrate Azerbaijan’s continued aggression at the Artsakh border.
“The Video shows the bodies of the Azeri soldiers, who were claimed to have conquered Seysulan, while Seysulan has been Armenian, and will stay Armenian,” the Ministry of Defense says in a statement.
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Artsakh’s presidential spokesperson David Babayan tweeted that Azerbaijan was saying one thing while doing another. “Azerbaijani forces continue shelling, trying to intrude into Nagorno-Karabakh’s territory.”
Armenia’s Defense Ministry spokesperson Artsrun Hovhannisyan also confirmed heavy fighting in Karabakh provoked by Azerbaijani forces after Aliyev’s made the announcement
“We continue to take measures to restrain the actions of the adversary, and are commanding the situation on many sections of the frontline. It should be noted, however, that heavy fighting continues at some parts of the line of contact, where the adversary has accumulated a large amount of armaments,” Hovhannisyan said.
The Spokesman Azerbaijan was aiming incite panic through announcements that its armed forces have inflicted losses on Armenian troops and seized combat equipment.
The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Defense Ministry announced Sunday that Karabakh forces forces had destroyed another Azerbaijani tank, a BM-21 (Grad) Multiple Launch Rocket System, an artillery system, engineering equipment, and one drone.
Meanwhile, hundreds in Armenia and Artsakh enlisted to volunteer to fight on the frontlines, with former Karabakh war battalions began to reform after calls from the Armenian Revolutionary Federation and other freedom fighter organizations prompted veterans to re-enlist.