Azerbaijan declares ceasefire

Azerbaijan declared a unilateral ceasefire on Sunday, a day after hostilities in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict claimed at least 30 troops on both sides.

Azerbaijan declared a unilateral ceasefire on Sunday, a day after hostilities in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict claimed at least 30 troops on both sides.

“In the light of persistent calls from international organizations and given the fact that the government of Azerbaijan is pursuing a peaceful policy, the Azerbaijani armed forces took a unilateral decision to stop counter-attacks and retaliatory action against the enemy in the occupied territories of the Republic of Azerbaijan,” the ministry of defense said in a


. “The armed forces decided to launch defensive measures in the retaken territories and areas.”

The ministry added: “If the Armenian military continues carrying out provocations and firing on our residential areas and positions, the Azerbaijani troops will use all the weaponry in hand to continue offensive operations in order to destroy the enemy, liberate the occupied territories and ensure our territorial integrity.”

However, David Babayan, spokesman for the Karabakh president, told

The Associated Press

on Sunday that they had not seen any signs that fighting was suspended. “The situation is quite the opposite,” he said,

At least 18 Armenian and 12 Azerbaijani troops were killed in the fighting, according to state media reports. Two Azerbaijani civilians were killed, and ten injured in shelling from the Armenian side, the Azerbaijani Interior Ministry and the Prosecutor’s General Office



Armenian troops reportedly fired at “settlements near the frontline in Karabakh from large-caliber machine guns, mines and rocket-propelled grenades and guns,” according to the statement.



that a 12-year-old boy died as a result of shelling from the Azerbaijani side.

An Azerbaijani Mi-24 helicopter carrying out airstrikes on Armenian military positions was shot down, and a mine blast damaged a tank, according to Azertac.

Meanwhile, the

Armenpress news agency

, citing Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan, said 18 troops were killed and 35 wounded “because of the provocative actions made by the Azerbaijani armed forces along the entire length of contact line with the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic.”

Residents in Agdam ready to take up arms

In Agdam, a southwestern Azerbaijani town that was destroyed by Armenian forces in the summer 1993 offensive, residents say that they are ready to take up arms to defend their town. Despite the shelling that took place the night of April 2, residents did not leave the town.

“They used all sorts of large-caliber weapons including cannons and grenades. The shooting is still going on. Five grenades were fired at the village today,” one resident said on Saturday. “Not the people, but the livestock was seriously damaged. All the young ones are here. We just need weapons to move forward.”

Local resident Khudaverdi Guliyev says that the morale is high among the population: “We trust our armed forces, we are confident in them. Everyone here is waiting for the commander in chief, Ilham Aliyev’s order to move forward. We are ready to fight any second now, shall he order so.”

Guliyev said that people continued their daily activities, including harvesting and working in the fields, despite the fighting.

“It is a war zone, anything can happen here. However, everyone is doing their jobs. They shoot at the fields, yet the people continue working there. We are not afraid of anything. We have seen it all. We are confident in our army, in our defense minister, in our president. Today, the head of the Executive Power in Aghdam Raqub Mammadov, prosecutor Mr. Rafael, and chief of Police Department Elchin Gasimov came here. They are still here. They have been in touch with us the whole day.”

“We want to move forward. Once they give us some weapons, we will move forward,” another Agdam resident told Meydan TV on Saturday.

ГлавнаяAnalysisAzerbaijan declares ceasefire