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Armenia, Azerbaijan trade blame for breaking cease-fire

Alex Berry
September 23, 2022

A fragile cease-fire between the two former Soviet states has come under further stress. Both sides are blaming the other for firing on their own soldiers' positions.

Azerbaijani troops stationed in the city of Lachin in early September
Fighting along the Armenia-Azerbaijan border has been reported overnight and in the early morningImage: Resul Rehimov /AA/picture alliance

The defense ministries of both Armenia and Azerbaijan accused each other of violating a recent cease-fire on Friday.

Fighting between the neighboring countries, located between Turkey and Russia in the Caucasus, in early September left almost 200 soldiers dead.

Yerevan and Baku both said that the other had fired on their own military positions along the shared border.

A cease-fire to end the hostilities — the deadliest since a conflict in 2020 over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region — was brokered by Russia, a military ally of Armenia.

What did the two sides say?

Armenia's Ministry of Defense wrote on Twitter that in the early hours of Friday, Azerbaijani forces "again violated the ceasefire, by opening fire from various caliber firearms."

"The fire was suppressed by countermeasures," it added.

The Azerbaijani ministry said that Armenian armed forces had "periodically subjected to fire the Azerbaijan Army positions" overnight.

"The Azerbaijan Army Units took adequate retaliatory measures," the ministry said.

Fighting between the two sides broke out while Russia — which has deployed peacekeeping troops in the region — has been bogged down in its war in Ukraine.

Armenia said that Azerbaijani troops had attacked territories beyond Nagorno-Karabakh while Azerbaijan said the conflict was a response to Armenian "provocations."

Edited by: Kieran Burke