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Baku says hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone continue

Several enemy strongholds were destroyed, important territories and heights were captured, Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry said

BAKU, October 23. /TASS/. Hostilities in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone continue, Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry reported on Friday.

"At present, the hostilities continue along the entire length of the frontline," it said in a statement posted on its website.

According to the ministry, the fighting continued with varying degrees of intensity on Thursday and overnight into Friday in the Agdere, Fizuli-Hadrut-Jabrail and Qubadli directions. It noted that the Azerbaijani army’s positions had been shelled by Armenian forces, which used small arms, mortars and cannons.

"As a result of the Azerbaijani army’s operations, strikes were carried out at Armenian armed forces units in the Fuzuli, Jabrail and Qubadli directions. Several enemy strongholds were destroyed, important territories and heights were captured," the Defense Ministry said.

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.

Moscow brokered a humanitarian ceasefire that took effect on October 10 but was violated. Later, the Foreign Ministries of Armenia and Azerbaijan announced plans to declare another ceasefire at midnight on October 18, but the hostilities continue, and the warring parties keep blaming each other for violating the truce.

Baku and Yerevan have disputed sovereignty over Nagorno-Karabakh since February 1988, when the region declared secession from the Azerbaijani Soviet Socialist Republic. In the armed conflict of 1992-1994 Azerbaijan lost control of Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjoining districts.