— FO says conflict poses ‘serious threat’ to regional peace
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan condemned on Tuesday Armenia’s recent provocative attack on the Azerbaijan army, saying the unresolved bilateral conflict “pose [a] serious threat to regional peace.”
At least four Azerbaijani soldiers were martyred and three others injured when Armenian forces violated a ceasefire, and targeted positions held by the Azerbaijan army on Sunday.
In response to Armenia’s weekend attack, the Azerbaijan army launched counterattacks Monday with cannon shots. The positions of the Armenian army, military radar station, vehicle depot, tanks and armored vehicles were hit, Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry said in a statement. More than 20 personnel from the Armenian army were killed in the attack, it added.
Responding to the attack through a statement, the Foreign Office said: “Pakistan strongly condemns the attack by Armenian forces in the Tovuz district of Azerbaijan on July 12, 2020, which resulted in several Azeri casualties. We extend our sincere condolences to the bereaved families, ”
Islamabad said the unresolved Nagorno-Karabakh conflict poses a serious threat to regional peace and security with far-reaching consequences.
“The recent provocative action is the manifestation of the Armenian attempt to distract the international community and hamper the ongoing negotiation process for peaceful resolution of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict as enshrined in the relevant UN Security Council resolutions,” the statement said.
“Pakistan reaffirms its principled position on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and reiterates its support to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Azerbaijan.”
Upper Karabakh, or Nagorno-Karabakh, an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan, is under Armenia’s occupation since 1991.
DEADLY BORDER CLASHES:
Deadly border clashes between arch-foes Armenia and Azerbaijan began last week, as the European Union and regional power broker Moscow urged restraint.
Three Azerbaijanis were killed on Sunday and one on Monday, Baku’s defense ministry said, adding that both sides were using artillery, mortars and tanks in the north part of their border.
The Armenian foreign ministry said the artillery fire from Azerbaijan “receded” later on Monday, claiming Yerevan was “fully controlling” the situation.
The two former Soviet republics have been locked in a simmering conflict for decades over Azerbaijan’s region of Nagorny Karabakh, which was seized by ethnic-Armenian separatists in a 1990s war that claimed 30,000 lives.