Ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh Seems to Have Largely Been Restored

World | April 6, 2016, Wednesday // 10:49|  views

Armenian artillery position of the self-defense army of Nagorno-Karabakh in Martakert, Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, 03 April 2016. Photo: EPA

The ceasefire in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh seems to have largely been restored after Azerbaijan and the Armenian separatists reached an agreement to cease hostilities on Tuesday.

This development comes after the outbreak of fighting at the end of last week, which represented the most serious surge in violence in the past two decades.

The forces of Azerbaijan and the Armenian separatist clashed at the line of contact, which effectively serves as front line, with the two sides exchanging artillery fire and deploying heavy military equipment.

The fighting was condemned by the international community, with Russia and the West calling on the sides to restrain from the use of force and return to the political process as there is no military solution to the conflict.

Armenia and Azerbaijan hurled mutual accusations at each other, with each side blaming the other for the outbreak of hostilities. Yerevan and Baku are also accusing each other of violating the ceasefire.

The co-chairmanship of the OSCE Minsk Group, comprising the USA, Russia and France, which acts as mediator in the conflict, has strongly condemned the fighting and called on the sides to return to the negotiation table.

The exact number of casualties on both sides remains unknown, with figures ranging from forty to over sixty. It is almost certain that civilians were also killed.

Azerbaijan has reported the death of sixteen of its soldiers, while the self-proclaimed Nagorno-Karabakh republic stated that twenty of its servicemen had been killed.

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Tags: Armenia, azerbaijan, Nagorno-Karabakh, OSCE, Minsk Group, Russia, USA


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