YEREVAN, October 16. /TASS/. The defense army of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh republic reserves the right to deliver strikes at Azerbaijani troops pulled to the border with Iran, Levon Aivazyan, chief of the Armenian defense ministry’s defense policy management and international cooperation directorate, said on Friday at a meeting with Iranian embassy’s defense attache Bahman Sadeghi.
"Despite the numerous calls from the Armenian side, the Azerbaijani armed forces continue to be pulled to and conduct operations along the border with Iran. On behalf of the Arstakh (the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh republic - TASS) defense army, Levon Aivazyan states that in case the situation in the above mentioned area remained the same the defense army reserved the right to deliver strikes at the Azerbaijani armed forces in this area," the Armenian defense ministry said after the meeting.
According to the ministry, it was said to the Iranian side that the Azerbaijani army must relocate combat operations to a safe distance from the border with Iran.
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 between 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 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.