Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinián declared Tuesday in his country’s Parliament that at least 49 soldiers have died on the Armenian side in the Azerbaijani attack that began last night on the border between the two countries.
“At the moment, we know from the Ministry of Defense about 49 dead soldiers. The figure is not definitive,” Pashinián was quoted as saying by the News.am portal.
During an extraordinary session of the Legislative, the Armenian leader pointed out that Baku has attacked Armenia in about seven directions.
“Around midnight Azerbaijan attacked (Armenia) from four directions, later another three joined,” he said.
According to Pashinyan, the Azerbaijani aggression is related to Baku’s unwillingness to advance peace negotiations around the Nagorno-Karabakh enclave, over which Armenia and Azerbaijan waged war in September 2020.
“Azerbaijan does not want negotiations on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict,” Pashinyan said, adding that this was made clear during a recent meeting with Azerbaijani leader Ilham Aliev in Brussels.
In the Belgian capital, Pashinian continued, “it became clear that they (the Azerbaijani side) do not want to discuss our proposals on peace negotiations.”
Today the Armenian leader also addressed the escalation on the border with the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, who sponsored the meeting between the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan in Brussels.
“Charles Michel said that peace and stability in the region have no alternative and he also expressed readiness to apply his efforts to prevent further escalation,” the Armenian government statement said.
During his speech in the Armenian Parliament, Pashinian recalled that Yerevan has approached Russia, the CSTO post-Soviet military alliance and the UN Security Council over the situation on the border.
“As you know, we have approached the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) and their permanent council is meeting now,” he said.
Faced with the Armenian version that blames Azerbaijan for the attack, Baku attributes responsibility for it to Yerevan with acts of sabotage in the Dashkesan, Kelbajar and Lachin directions of the border between Azerbaijan and Armenia.
According to the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry, the Armenian soldiers “intensely fired” at the Azerbaijani Army positions in those three towns “with weapons of various calibers, including mortars.
As a result, Baku assured, “there were losses among the personnel of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces, and the military infrastructure was also damaged.”
Therefore, “decisive response measures were taken by Azerbaijani Army units deployed in this direction to suppress firing points of the Armenian Armed Forces,” the statement said.