YEREVAN, (BM) – Since the start of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict on September 27 this year, there has been a case that remains a cornerstone of Armenia’s claims that this war is being waged by three countries – Armenia, Azerbaijan and Turkey.
We remind you that on September 29, an Armenian Su-25 of the Armenian Air Force was shot down by a rocket fired. Even then, Armenian media launched the idea that the plane had fallen victim to a Turkish F-16, a claim that Azerbaijan and Turkey have repeatedly denied. The other major problem in this case is the second allegation by the Armenian authorities that the Turkish F-16 violated the country’s airspace.
Weeks after these comments, Yerevan made the same statement again, this time citing “information and data provided” by their Air Defense Forces.
The Deputy Commander of the Armenian Air Defense Forces, Colonel Garik Movsesyan said at a press conference on Thursday [October 15 – ed.]: “Azerbaijan’s statements that Turkey is not taking part in the fighting in Karabakh are a lie. Turkish F-16 fighters arrived in Azerbaijan through Georgian airspace in July. They took part in a Turkish -Azerbaijani military exercises. After these exercises they stayed at the military airport in Ganja,” Movsesyan said and continued “On September 27, the F-16 violated the airspace of Armenia by 6 km and hit the village of Mets Masrik and the city of Vardenis, on September 29 the Turkish F-16 on 60 km from the border shot down an Armenian Su-25, and on October 10 hit Kapan twice.”
Azerbaijan and Turkey have repeatedly made similar allegations. However, what became known a few days ago is really the presence of a Turkish F-15 on the territory of Azerbaijan. Distributed satellite images show the location of the two Turkish fighter jets on the runway at Ganja Airport, as well as a military transport plane. Until now, Azerbaijani President Aliyev has categorically stated that there are no Turkish planes in his country.
Following the distribution of the satellite images, he abruptly changed his position and said they were there as they remained after the exercises with the Turkish side, but did not take any part in the hostilities.
The situation in Nagorno-Karabakh escalated on September 27, active clashes are taking place in the disputed territory. Martial law was introduced in Azerbaijan and Armenia, and mobilization was announced. Both sides reported killed and wounded, including civilians. In Baku, they announced the control of several Karabakh villages and strategic heights. Yerevan also reports about the shelling of the territory of Armenia.
Azerbaijan and Armenia have been in conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh since February 1988, when the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region announced its withdrawal from the Azerbaijan SSR.
During the armed conflict in 1992-1994, the Azerbaijani side lost control of Nagorno-Karabakh and the seven areas adjacent to it. Since 1992, negotiations have been conducted within the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group on a peaceful settlement of the conflict. The group is led by co-chairs – Russia, USA and France.
In 1994, Azerbaijan, Armenia and the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, through the mediation of Russia, signed the Bishkek Armistice Protocol. At the same time, military operations did not stop there, which periodically renewed.
The most significant exacerbation of the conflict was the four-day war of 2016. Then hundreds of soldiers on both sides became victims.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, during a meeting with the President of Azerbaijan last year, called for a rhetoric that would go against the fundamental principles endorsed by both sides and enshrined in the UN Charter and the Helsinki Final Act when resolving the situation around Nagorno-Karabakh.
At the same time, the head of the Russian Foreign Ministry admitted that much more needs to be done to achieve a long-term political settlement.
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