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Armenian Defense Ministry Claims Azerbaijani Armed Forces Firing at Border

© Sputnik / Karo Saakian / Go to the photo bankThe village of Talish in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone
The village of Talish in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone - Sputnik International
Yerevan blamed Baku for firing weapons including mortars toward the Armenian border.

YEREVAN (Sputnik) – The Armenian Defense Ministry said Azeri Armed Forces on Monday fired at the country’s border.

“Azerbaijani Armed Forces late Sunday and early Monday fired 17 times toward the northeastern state border with Armenia… Heavy weapons including mortars were used. The shots from the Azerbaijani side were mostly chaotic,” the Armenian Defense Ministry’s press service said.

The ministry added that the Armenian Army controlled the situation at the border and resorted to responsive measures only when strictly necessary.

Earlier in the day the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry’s press service reported Armenian Armed Forces had violated the ceasefire along the line of contact in Nagorno-Karabakh 117 times over the last 24 hours.

On April 5, Armenia and Azerbaijan agreed on a bilateral ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh, which came into force at noon on the same day.

Azerbaijan does not recognize the ethnically Armenian self-proclaimed Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (NKR) and considers the Nagorno-Karabakh Defense Army to be a part of the Armed Forces of Armenia.

On April 2, Armenia and Azerbaijan declared a dramatic escalation of hostilities in the Nagorno-Karabakh region. Baku and Yerevan traded blame for breaching the truce in the conflict and reported heavy fighting in the area.

This aerial view shows destroyed houses during the fighting at Martakert province in the region of Nagorno-Karabakh, Azerbaijan, Monday, April 4, 2016 - Sputnik International
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Initially, the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh began in 1988, when the Armenian-dominated autonomous region sought to secede from the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic, before proclaiming independence after the Soviet Union's collapse in 1991. The conflict escalated further in September 2015, with the sides blaming one another for violating the truce.

On Sunday, the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic's Defense Ministry told RIA Novosti that the Azerbaijani forces had violated the ceasefire in the breakaway region, adding that the Nagorno-Karabakh forces "mostly refrained from response actions."

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