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Azerbaijan targets civilians in Nagorno-Karabakh, says Armenian Foreign Ministry

The Armenian authorities said earlier that a group of journalists had come under Azerbaijani fire in Nagorno-Karabakh’s town of Martuni

YEREVAN, October 1. /TASS/. The Azerbaijani Armed Forces are deliberately targeting civilians and civilian facilities in Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Anna Nagdalyan said at a briefing on Thursday.

"Azerbaijan is deliberately targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure facilities, causing casualties and damage," she pointed out, mentioning an incident when Armenian and foreign journalists came under fire.

According to Nagdalyan, "Azerbaijan targeted the journalists after" the Armenian Foreign Ministry had said that about 200 reporters were working in the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic.

The Armenian authorities said earlier that a group of journalists had come under Azerbaijani fire in Nagorno-Karabakh’s town of Martuni. Two reporters with the French newspaper Le Monde, a reporter with the 24news.am media outlet and a cameraman with the Armenia TV channel suffered wounds.

Renewed clashes between Azerbaijan and Armenia erupted on September 27, with intense battles raging in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh. The area experienced flare-ups of violence in the summer of 2014, in April 2016 and this past July. Azerbaijan and Armenia have imposed martial law and launched mobilization efforts. Both parties to the conflict have reported casualties, among them civilians.

The conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, a disputed territory that had been part of Azerbaijan before the Soviet Union break-up, but primarily populated by ethnic Armenians, broke out in February 1988 after the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region announced its withdrawal from the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist 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 under the OSCE Minsk Group, led by its three co-chairs - Russia, France and the United States.