Russia calls for end to bloodshed in Nagorno-Karabakh

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at the Kremlin in Moscow, Sept. 2020. | Mikhail Metzel/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP

Russia on Wednesday called on both Armenia and Azerbaijan to stop hostilities following Baku’s launch of a military operation in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh in the southern Caucasus.


“Due to the rapid escalation of armed clashes in Nagorno-Karabakh, we call on the parties to the conflict to immediately stop the bloodshed, cease hostilities and avoid civilian casualties,’’ Russian Foreign Ministry said this in a statement, reported by the Russian state agency TASS.


Russian soldiers stationed in the region were supporting the civilian population in Nagorno-Karabakh, the ministry added.


The soldiers were providing medical assistance and helping with evacuation issues.


The Defence Ministry in Baku said the anti-terrorist operation, which began on Tuesday.


This serves as to enforcing withdrawal of Armenian troops from the region, which was stipulated in the ceasefire after the last Nagorno-Karabakh war in 2020.


According to a Tuesday statement from Baku, the military operation serves to enforce the withdrawal of Armenian troops from the region.


It was stipulated in the ceasefire after the last Nagorno-Karabakh war in 2020.


According to local reports, the fighting has already claimed the lives of at least 27 people in Nagorno-Karabakh on the first day of the operation.


It also includes two civilians.


In addition, more than 200 people were injured in the region.


According to local reports, about 7,000 inhabitants from 16 towns were brought to safety from Azerbaijani shelling.


Although Nagorno-Karabakh lies on Azerbaijani territory, the majority of the population in the region is Armenian.


The two former Soviet neighbours have been fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh for decades.


Muslim-majority Azerbaijan is supported by Turkey, with which it also has linguistic and cultural ties, while Russia, Armenia’s traditional protecting power and a fellow Orthodox Christian nation, is losing influence. (dpa/NAN)


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