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WASHINGTON, January 6. /TASS/. The United States is concerned over armed incidents on the Azerbaijani-Armenian border and urges both parties to prevent clashes, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.
“We are concerned about the violence in Nagorno-Karabakh,” Psaki said.
Washington “calls on both parties to participate in negotiations that will lead to peace in the region”, she said.
Psaki stressed that the US urged Azerbaijan and Armenia to settle the dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh by peace talks under the control of the OSCE Minsk Group.
On January 3, the Armenian Defence Ministry said two people were killed as a result of the incident in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone.
On January 4, the Azerbaijani Defence Ministry said the army and the republic’s settlements came under fire with the use of large-calibre weapons, grenade launchers and mortars.
The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict began on February 22, 1988. On November 29, 1989 direct rule in Nagorno-Karabakh was ended and Azerbaijan regained control of the region. However, later a joint session of the Armenian parliament and the top legislative body of Nagorno-Karabakh proclaimed the unification of Nagorno-Karabakh with Armenia.
The struggle over Nagorno-Karabakh escalated after both Armenia and Azerbaijan obtained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. By the end of 1993, the conflict had caused thousands of casualties and created hundreds of thousands of refugees on both sides. An unofficial ceasefire was reached on May 12, 1994.