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BAKU, July 13. /TASS/. The Armenian armed forces have "18 times violated the ceasefire regime in different front sectors" over the past 24 hours in the Karabakh conflict zone, the Azerbaijani Defense Minister said in a statement on Wednesday.
According to the ministry, "The Azerbaijani army positions came under fire opened from the positons in the Armenian territory, as well as from positions near populated localities and at heights in Nagorno-Karabakh and adjoining areas," controlled by the Armenian side.
The situation along the line of engagement in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone deteriorated dramatically overnight to April 2 when fierce clashes began. The parties to the conflict accused each other of violating the truce.
On April 5, Azerbaijan’s Chief of Staff Nadjmeddin Sadykov and his Armenian counterpart Yuri Khachaturov met in Moscow with Russia’s mediation. At the talks the sides came to an agreement on cessation of hostilities at the line of engagement between the Azerbaijani and Armenian forces. On the same day, the two countries’ defense ministries announced that the ceasefire regime in Nagorno-Karabakh would start at 12am local time. Since then, the parties to the conflict have been accusing each other of violating the ceasefire agreement.
On May 16, the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan met in Vienna. Serzh Sargsyan and Ilkham Aliyev agreed to "make steps to monitor observance of agreements on ceasefire and introduce a mechanism on investigating incidents." The participants in the Vienna talks on Nagorno-Karabakh on May 16 that also involved the Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents, with mediation of the foreign ministers of the countries co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group (Russia, the United States, France) reach an agreement on observing the ceasefire in the region in the format of the 1994-1995 agreements. In addition, the conflict sides agreed to complete as soon as possible the work on the OSCE mechanism for investigating incidents at the line of engagement of the conflict sides.
On June 20, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts Serzh Sargsyan and Ilkham Aliyev adopted a trilateral statement where they expressed commitment to the normalization the situation along the engagement line in Nagorno-Karabakh.