How Azerbaijan and Turkey prepared to war against Karabakh

How Azerbaijan and Turkey prepared to war against Karabakh

A timeline of how the war machine was set in motion

Azerbaijan launched a large-scale military offensive along the Nagorno-Karabakh line of contact in the early hours of September 27. Fighting is continuing along the frontline, with Azerbaijan firing from large caliber rocket systems, targeting civilian settlements as well.

PanARMENIAN.Net - Azerbaijan planned the assault on Artsakh (Karabakh) well in advance. Before the outbreak of hostilities, Baku had already launched an information warfare and was paving the way for taking it to the battlefield.

On September 21, the Azerbaijani State Service for Mobilization and Conscription announced that soldiers and officers in the reserves had been called for military training and inspection, and unspecified "special gatherings".

There have also been numerous reports that drivers of pickup trucks had been stopped by police on September 21 and ordered to go to a nearby state-run impound lot.

Upon arrival at the impound lot, the drivers were met by government officials who informed them that their cars may be needed by the military. The cars were reportedly inspected and then added to an official list, some were not returned to their owners.

For recent joint exercises on August 1-10, Turkey deployed F-16 fighter jets in Azerbaijan. Razm.info reported on September 15 that the aircraft had not returned to their bases in Turkey and were spotted flying above the Azerbaijani town of Ganja.

Baku has declared many times that the format of the OSCE Minsk Group is not effective, and did not hide the role of Turkey in the conflict.

When the situation on the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan escalated in July, Turkey reiterated its “unwavering support” for Azerbaijan. Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar vowed back then that Armenia will be “brought to account”, saying Turkey is closely following developments in the region.

Immediately after the July escalation, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev has fired his longtime Foreign Minister Ilham Mammadyarov. Aliyev then replaced him with Jeyhun Bayramov, who had been Azerbaijan’s minister of education. Mammadyarov’s ouster became all but inevitable after Aliyev accused him of lying down on the job in extensive comments on July 15.

Aliyev has repeatedly lashed out at the international mediators brokering a settlement to the Karabakh conflict, calling the OSCE Minsk Group’s efforts and meetings between the foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan “meaningless.” In mid-July, he said “we are not going to hold negotiations and meaningless video conferences for the sake of parody,” he told Bayramov. “There has to be a meaning.”

The Azerbaijani President went one step further and claimed on September 19 that negotiations over the settlement of the Karabakh conflict do not exist. He even accused Armenia of “disrupting the negotiation process."

Addressing the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly, Aliyev said “Armenia is preparing for new aggression against Azerbaijan” and called on “the UN and international community to urge Armenia to refrain from another military aggression.”

Since the morning of September 27, Internet connection in Azerbaijan has slowed down, and access to most social networks, except for Twitter, has been restricted.

Minutes after the escalation was officially announced, Turkish media began live broadcasts from the line of contact, which is one more proof that the offensive was initiated by Azerbaijan and was planned well in advance.

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