The people of Artsakh cannot survive in their historical homeland without the Defense Army, and the scenario of withdrawing the Defense Army from Artsakh is a scenario of evicting Armenians from Artsakh, the Armenian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
It noted that in recent days, the Azerbaijani Armed Forces have intensified their provocative actions against both the Armed Forces of the Republic of Armenia and units of the Artsakh Defense Army. The settlements of the Republic of Armenia and Artsakh have also been targeted.
“The Azerbaijani side is trying to cover up its aggressive actions by accusing the Armenian side of violating the November 9 trilateral statement, and on the other hand it is openly distorting the November 9 statement,” the Ministry stated.
“We consider it necessary to mention that the first point of the November 9 announcement clearly defines: “… the parties stop at their positions.” Meanwhile, a month after the signing of the declaration, the Azerbaijani military units launched an attack on the villages of Hin Tagher and Khtsaberd in the Hadrut region of Artsakh, as a result of which they occupied those settlements, killed and captured the Armenian servicemen. Currently, the Azerbaijani side is also trying to occupy new positions in different parts of the line of contact, targeting Armenian positions with various weapons, including drones,” the statement reads.
The latest incident took place today near the villages of Mkhitarashen and Shosh, the Ministry noted, adding that “the claims of the Azerbaijani side that the November 9 trilateral statement stipulates the withdrawal of Armenian troops from Nagorno Karabakh is an obvious lie.”
“In the current situation, the Artsakh Defense Army, which was formed by the people of Artsakh in the 90s, has been a key factor of security for the last 30 years, and today, together with the Russian peacekeepers, ensures the security and the right to life of the people of Artsakh. The people of Artsakh cannot survive in their historical homeland without the Defense Army, and the scenario of withdrawing the Defense Army from Artsakh is a scenario of evicting Armenians from Artsakh,” the Foreign Ministry stated.
It emphasized that the statement of November 9 envisages the withdrawal of Armenian troops only from the adjacent regions of Nagorno Karabakh, which are clearly indicated in the statement. “The Armenian side fully complied with these points of the statement, while Azerbaijan responded to this by infiltrating the sovereign territory of the Republic of Armenia from the same territories and illegally deploying there.”
These encroachments against the Republic of Armenia since May 12 have resulted in human casualties and seriously endangered regional security.
“We are convinced that the resumption of the Karabakh peace process under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs, the full implementation of the trilateral statements of November 9 and January 11, the elimination of the violations, including the unconditional observance of the ceasefire, the withdrawal of Azerbaijani troops from the Armenian territory. The immediate repatriation of prisoners of war or civilian hostages may set the stage for regional peace and security,” the Ministry concluded.