Russian President Vladimir Putin and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron called during a phone call yesterday evening, Wednesday, for a complete cessation of fighting in the Nagorno Karabakh region, stressing their readiness to intensify diplomatic efforts to contribute to resolving the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia, according to a Kremlin statement.
Moscow had previously expressed concern about reports of foreign fighters being transferred to the conflict zone in Nagorno Karabakh, and said that “this not only leads to a greater escalation of tension in the region, but also poses a long-term threat to the security of all countries in the region,” he said. Statement of the Russian Foreign Ministry.
The ministry announced that Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held separate telephone conversations with his Azerbaijani counterparts, Zhihun Piramov and Armenian Zurab Manatsakyanian.
Lavrov called on the two sides to immediately cease fire and de-escalation of tension, refrain from provocative and hard-line speech, and return to the negotiating table, stressing his country’s readiness to provide a platform for organizing contacts between the parties, including holding a regular meeting of foreign ministers of Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russia.
In turn, the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, expressed his concern about the escalation of tension between Azerbaijan and Armenia, calling on the parties to immediately cease fire.
Michel condemned, through his Twitter account, the use of violence between the two countries, stressing the need for an immediate ceasefire and the protection of civilians.
He stressed that the only way to resolve the dispute between the two countries is through negotiations, indicating his support for the work of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
For the fourth consecutive day, battles continued in the Nagorno Karabakh region between the Armenian and Azerbaijani armies, over the control of the cities of Fozuli, Gabriel and Tatar.
— Azerbaijan MOD (@wwwmodgovaz) September 30, 2020
The Armenian army said that it launched an intense attack with heavy artillery and rockets on the city of Tartar. Which led to deaths, injuries and material losses. On the other hand, the Azerbaijani army announced that it had thwarted a counterattack by the Armenian forces in the Magadez region.
And the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry announced in a statement yesterday, Wednesday, that its forces managed during the four days of the outbreak of the clashes to destroy about 200 tanks and armored vehicles of the Armenian army.
It indicated the destruction of 228 artillery and missile systems, 30 air defense systems, 6 command and control centers, 5 ammunition depots, and 110 vehicles, in addition to one Russian-made S-300 air defense system.
For its part, the Armenian Ministry of Defense said that it destroyed “137 tanks, 72 drones, 7 helicopters and a combat plane,” noting that “790 Azerbaijani soldiers were killed and 1900 wounded.”
While there were a number of dead and wounded on both sides, the two sides exchanged accusations of violating international laws and attacking civilian targets.
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev said that the only condition for stopping the battles with Armenia in the disputed Nagorno Karabakh region is the complete, unconditional and without delay withdrawal of Armenian-backed forces from the region.
Al-Jazeera correspondent Omar Khashram reported that civilians in the city of Naftalan, on the Azerbaijani border with the Karabakh region, were affected by the ongoing battles between the two sides.
In a related development, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said that it is not possible to talk about a Russian-Azerbaijani-Armenian summit during the intense battles, adding that the negotiation needs a supportive atmosphere and efforts to achieve it.
Al-Jazeera correspondent quoted eyewitnesses as saying that at least 3 civilians were killed by shells from the Azerbaijani side on Badak “Martakert”, which is only two kilometers from the front lines.
In a related context, the controversy escalated between France and Turkey due to their position on the conflict in Nagorny Karabakh, where the French President Emmanuel Macron accused Turkey of carrying out propaganda for Azerbaijan, fond of war, and removing any obstacles before it for what he described as the occupation of Nagorny Karabakh again, stressing that his country will not accept So.
But Macron added that he has no evidence at the current stage of direct Turkish participation. He said at a press conference in Latvia that he had spoken to the leaders of Azerbaijan and Armenia, called for a ceasefire, and indicated that he would discuss the issue with Russian Presidents Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump.
On the other hand, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Wednesday that the solidarity of the French president with Armenia means his support for the occupation.
The Turkish Foreign Minister – in an interview with Anadolu Agency – renewed his country’s full support for Azerbaijan, whether at the negotiating table or on the battlefield.
“If the issue is to be solved diplomatically, then we will defend and will continue to defend the rights of Azerbaijan at the negotiating table, and if it wants to solve the issue on the ground, we will stand with all our capabilities on its side and we will do the necessary if Azerbaijan submits any request in this regard, but we now see that it has the ability.” Enough to do this alone. “
The Turkish minister stressed that Armenia would not have dared this way if it had not received support from Western countries and Russia.
In a phone call, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani discussed with the Armenian Prime Minister the tension between Armenia and Azerbaijan.
Rouhani said that the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan is not a solution, and it will complicate the existing problem between them, stressing that the solution to the dispute between Baku and Yerevan must be through dialogue, and any external interference will increase the tension.
The Iranian President expressed his readiness to play a constructive role to reduce the crisis.
The Iranian Presidency website quoted the Armenian Prime Minister as welcoming any initiative to stop the violence, warning against any foreign interference in the conflict.