Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on Armenia to end the “occupation” of the disputed Nagorno Karabakh region by Azerbaijan.
This came as fighting raged for the second day in a row, with the decades-old conflict resuming in the Caucasus region in southeastern Europe.
Erdogan said that ending the “invasion” of Armenia and its withdrawal from the region is the only path that would bring peace.
“Turkey will continue to stand by the friendly and united Azerbaijan with all its capabilities,” the Turkish Anadolu news agency quoted Erdogan as saying.
Erdogan’s chief adviser, Elnur Civik, said Turkey had asked its allies in Azerbaijan to go as far as they wanted.
Dozens were reported to have been killed in fighting between forces from both sides on Monday.
The mountainous Nagorno-Karabakh region is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, but it has been under Armenian control since the war ended in 1994.
During that war tens of thousands of people were killed and a million people forced from their homes.
On Monday evening, authorities in Nagorno Karabakh reported that an additional 26 soldiers were killed in the fighting, bringing their total losses to more than 80.
Other countries fear that the recent fighting may spread outside the region and attract neighboring powers, including Turkey, Russia and Iran.
They are also keen to maintain stability in the region, as major gas and oil pipelines run through it.
The last battles began on Sunday, with Armenia and Azerbaijan blaming each other.
Both authorities said they had recruited more soldiers and declared laws of combat in certain areas.
The fighting is the fiercest in the conflict since 2016, when at least 200 people were killed in the clashes.
What an opinion Other countries Conflict؟
Turkey declared its support for Azerbaijan, while Russia – which has military bases in Armenia but is also friendly to Azerbaijan – called for an immediate ceasefire.
Armenia accused Turkey of providing direct military support to Azerbaijan to help it gain control of the territories, a claim it recently denied.
what do you say Whoever Armenia and Azerbaijan?
In an interview with the BBC, Armenian Foreign Minister Zaharaev Mantzkanyan accused Azerbaijan of sabotaging the peaceful settlement of the conflict and insisted that Armenia should protect the region.
A spokesman for the Azerbaijani administration told the BBC that his country was taking “counter measures” in the face of Armenia’s provocations.
We lived Carbach Key facts
- A mountainous area with an area of about 4,400 square kilometers
- It is traditionally inhabited by Christian Armenians and Muslim Turks
- In Soviet times it became an autonomous region within the Republic of Azerbaijan
- It is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, but most of its inhabitants are of Armenian descent
- An estimated one million people were displaced by the war between 1988-1994 and nearly 30,000 people were killed
- Separation forces occupied additional lands around the enclave in Azerbaijan during the 1990s war
- The stalemate has largely prevailed since the ceasefire began in 1994
- Turkey openly supports Azerbaijan
- Russia has military bases in Armenia
What New in battlefield؟
In addition to the deaths announced on Monday, the authorities in Nagorno Karabakh on Sunday announced that 16 people had been killed and more than a hundred injured.
The authorities in Armenia said that 200 of its citizens were injured in the clashes, according to Interfax.
Meanwhile, Azerbaijan said two of its citizens were killed on Monday after five people from one family were killed on Sunday. It also announced that 30 others were injured.
The Nagorno-Karabakh authorities said that their forces occupied some of the territories that Azerbaijani forces occupied on Sunday.
On Monday, the Azerbaijani government announced that it had seized sites of strategic importance in the disputed region.
In July, at least 16 people were killed in border clashes, leading to the largest demonstration in years in Azerbaijan’s capital, Baku, as there were calls for control of Nagorno-Karabakh.
Other international responses
- United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he was “extremely concerned” and urged both sides to stop the fighting
- The Russian Foreign Minister is holding urgent talks with both the Armenian and Azerbaijani leadership
- France, which has a large Armenian community, calls for a ceasefire and immediate dialogue
- Iran, which borders both Azerbaijan and Armenia, is offering to mediate peace talks
- US President Donald Trump has said the United States wants to stop the violence
What is the background?
In 1988, near the end of Soviet rule, Azerbaijani forces and Armenian separatists launched a bloody war that left Nagorno Karabakh in Armenian hands after the 1994 armistice was signed.
Tens of thousands were killed in the war and many Azerbaijanis were forced to flee their homes.
The region is currently practically independent, and it relies heavily on Armenian support. But it is not recognized by any member of the United Nations, including Armenia.
Also, large tracts of Azerbaijani lands around the enclave are under Armenian control.
Negotiations have failed so far to reach a permanent peace agreement, and the conflict in the region remains one of the “frozen conflicts” in Europe after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Krabach is the Russian translation of the Azerbaijani word meaning “black garden”, while Nagorno is a Russian word meaning “mountainous”. Armenians prefer to call the region Artsakh, which is an ancient Armenian name for the region.
Over the years, the two sides killed soldiers from the other side in sporadic ceasefire violations. Armenia, which has no maritime borders, has suffered severe economic problems due to the closure of the borders with neighboring Turkey and Azerbaijan.
Russia, France and the United States co-chair the Organization for Security and Cooperation in the Minsk European Group, which is trying to mediate an end to the conflict.
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