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Azerbaijan suspends anti-terrorist activities in Karabakh

Azerbaijan suspends anti-terrorist activities in Karabakh

 
- Baku sets conditions to maintain cease-fire, including Armenian forces laying down their arms and leaving combat positions
 

 

By Elena Teslova

MOSCOW (AA) - The Azerbaijani Defense Ministry said an agreement had been reached to suspend anti-terrorist activities in Karabakh as of 1 p.m. local time (0900GMT) Wednesday.

"Taking into account the request of the representatives of Armenian residents of Karabakh through the Russian peacekeeping contingent, an agreement was reached," the ministry said in a statement.

It said the formations of Armenia’s armed forces stationed in the region, as well as illegal armed groups must lay down their arms, leave their combat positions, and leave the territory of Azerbaijan.

Their weapons and heavy equipment should be removed from Karabakh, and all processes be carried out in coordination with the Russian peacekeeping mission, it said.

Separately, the Azerbaijani presidency said President Ilham Aliyev will meet representatives of the Karabakh Armenian community in the town of Yevlak on Thursday to discuss reintegration processes.

"Issues of reintegration based on the Constitution and laws of the Republic of Azerbaijan will be discussed at the meeting," the statement said.

In another statement, the Russian Defense Ministry said the agreement was reached with the mediation of the command of the Russian peacekeeping contingent.

Relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia have been tense since 1991, when the Armenian military occupied Nagorno-Karabakh, a territory internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, and seven adjacent regions.

In the fall of 2020, Azerbaijan liberated several cities, villages and settlements from Armenian occupation during 44 days of clashes. The war ended with a Russia-brokered cease-fire, and thus began a process of normalization between the ex-Soviet republics.

Azerbaijan on Tuesday said it launched the counter-terrorism measures to uphold provisions outlined in the trilateral peace agreement, "suppress large-scale provocations" and "disarm and secure the withdrawal of formations of Armenia’s armed forces."

 
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