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27 Sep 2020 | 07:21 AM UTC

Armenia: Azerbaijani strikes on settlements in disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region reported on September 27

Armenia News Alert

Azerbaijani strikes on settlements in disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region reported on September 27; further clashes likely

TIMEFRAME expected from 9/26/2020, 11:00 PM until 9/30/2020, 10:59 PM (Asia/Baku). COUNTRY/REGION Azerbaijan, Armenia

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Event

On Sunday, September 27, Azerbaijani forces reportedly carried out strikes on civilian settlements in the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, including the regional capital Stepanakert. Residents of the area have been instructed to seek refuge in shelters. Officials from the self-proclaimed Republic of Artsakh went on to claim that two Azerbaijani helicopters and three drones were shot down in retaliation to the air and artillery attacks. Azerbaijan has confirmed that one helicopter was lost to Armenian separatists, as well 12 surface-to-air missile systems. Following the separatist retaliation, Azerbaijan has launched what it claims to be a 'counter-offensive' in response to the strikes.

Further clashes in and around the Nagorno-Karabakh region are highly likely over the near term. Clashes along the length of the Armenian-Azerbaijani border outside the Nagorno-Karabakh region cannot be ruled out. A heightened security presence and a disruption to transportation are expected.

Context

Armenia and neighboring Azerbaijan have a long-standing dispute over the possession of Nagorno-Karabakh, home to some 150,000 inhabitants (mostly ethnic Armenians) and located in the west of Azerbaijan. This issue has fueled tensions between the two countries since 1988; some 30,000 people were killed in fighting from 1990 to 1994. The two countries declared another ceasefire in April 2016 after the region experienced four days of violent clashes that left hundreds dead.

Tensions between the two countries remain high and each side frequently accuses the other of violating the ceasefire agreement.

Advice

Western governments generally advise their citizens against all travel to Nagorno-Karabakh and the Azerbaijan-Armenia border. Those in Armenia are advised to monitor developments and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities and their home governments.

 

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