Azerbaijani defense ministry: Armenia’s provocation prevented

The Azerbaijani army positions in Qaymagli, Kemerli villages of Qazakh district, as well as Kokhanebi, Aghbulag, Aghdam villages of Tovuz district of Azerbaijan underwent fire from the Armenian army positions located in the Berd and Noyemberyan districts of Armenia, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry told Trend July 24.

The ministry was commenting on the information of the Armenian media that allegedly the Azerbaijani armed forces were shelling Armenian villages located near the state border.

"Similar news, spread by the Armenian authorities, is aimed at justifying the provocations committed by Armenia against Azerbaijani civilians in the border villages," the ministry said.

According to the ministry, to prevent this provocation the Azerbaijani armed forces took immediate counter measures by suppressing the Armenian armed forces' shelling in that direction.

The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.

The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.