BAKU, July 16. /TASS/. Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry reported on Thursday of the continued tensions in the Tovuz direction of the Azerbaijan-Armenia border and the renewal of clashes there.
"From the morning of July 16, the units of Armenia’s armed forces again attempted to attack the positions of the Azerbaijani army in the section of the Azerbaijan-Armenia border in the Tovuz district," the statement said.
According to the agency, the villages of Agdam, Dondar Gushchu, and Vahidli were shelled by large-caliber weapons and mortars with no civilian casualties. "Currently the fighting is ongoing in that direction. The combat situation is under control of the units of the Azerbaijani army," the statement noted.
In turn, Armenia’s Defense Ministry reported that the Azerbaijani units began shelling of the villages of Aygepar and Movses.
The situation on the Azerbaijan-Armenia border escalated on July 12. Azerbaijan reported of the attempt of the Armenian armed forces units to attack the positions of Azerbaijan’s army using artillery, while Yerevan reported that the border situation has aggravated after a breakthrough attempt on the part of Azerbaijan. Baku reported on the eleven Azerbaijani servicemen killed over three days of clashes, including Major General Polad Gashimov. Yerevan reported four servicemen killed and ten wounded.
The conflict between neighboring Armenia and Azerbaijan over the highland region of Nagorno-Karabakh, (a disputed territory that had been part of Azerbaijan before the Soviet Union break-up but was primarily populated by Armenians) broke out in February of 1988 after the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region announced its withdrawal from the Azerbaijani Soviet Republic. In 1992-1994, tensions boiled over and exploded into large-scale military action for control over the enclave and seven adjacent territories after Azerbaijan lost control of them. Talks on the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement have been ongoing since 1992 in the format of the so-called OSCE Minsk Group, led by its three co-chairs - Russia, France and the United States.