Armenian Defense Ministry slams Azeri ceasefire violations

Armenian Defense Ministry slams Azeri ceasefire violations

PanARMENIAN.Net - Armenian Defense Ministry accused Azerbaijan of violating ceasefire at contact line in defiance of the Olympic truce.

“Ignoring numerous calls of the international community and the OSCE Minsk Group Co-chairs to respect ceasefire at the line of contact and in defiance of the Olympic truce, Azeri forces continue shelling Armenian positions and settlements, which leads us to the conclusion that theirs actions are either not controlled by the commandment or are a provocation aiming to destabilize situation at the frontline,” the statement said.

“Armenian units continued with their military duty in line with ceasefire principles, taking necessary measures to protect the frontline, the statement said, according to Novosti-Armenia.

238 ceasefire violations by the Azeri armed forces were reported from February 9-12, 225 of them at the line of contact between Nagorno Karabakh and Azerbaijan.

The Co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group (Ambassadors Igor Popov of the Russian Federation, Jacques Faure of France, and James Warlick of the United States of America) and the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Ambassador Andrzej Kasprzyk, traveled to Baku and Yerevan Feb 4-5.

In Baku, the Co-chairs met with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, and in Yerevan they met with Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan. In both capitals, they had consultations with the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Defense.

With the Presidents, the Co-chairs discussed the outcome of the Foreign Ministers' recent meeting in Paris, and stressed the need for further progress on the substance of negotiations on the Nagorno Karabakh conflict. They emphasized the need to continue negotiations at the highest level, as was agreed in Vienna.

In their talks, the Co-chairs reiterated their deep concern over the recent escalation on the Line of Contact and the border, and called on the sides to exercise restraint in their actions and rhetoric. The sides stated their intention to strengthen observance of the ceasefire and avoid further escalation, particularly in light of the upcoming Olympic Games in Sochi.

Earlier, Russian Foreign Ministry urged for ceasefire in all the conflicts across the world for the duration of Winter Olympics in Sochi.

At the Feb 13 governmental sitting, Defense Minister Seyran Ohanyan announced Armenia’s joining the Russian-Belarusian deal on creation of financial and industrial group Defense Systems.

“The deal aims at strengthening of scientific, technical, industrial, trade and financial ties between defense enterprises of Armenia, Russia and Belarus, as well as support for further integration and effective use of the countries’ of industrial and investment potential,” the official said.

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