Statement of the Foreign Ministry of Armenia on the ambush by Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh05 March, 2023
On March 5, as a result of the ambush by Azerbaijani Armed Forces in Nagorno-Karabakh three servicemen of the Passport and Visa Department of the Police of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Nagorno-Karabakh were killed, and one was injured.
The facts prove that this provocation was pre-planned and instructed by the highest leadership of Azerbaijan. After the ambush, Azerbaijan's official bodies spread disinformation alleging that they received reports that weapons, ammunition and personnel are being transferred from Armenia to Nagorno-Karabakh and acted on these.
The official version of events put forward by Azerbaijan is absurd: they have not presented and cannot present any fact and justification supporting that version. This happens less than two weeks after the decision of the International Court of Justice that wholly rejected Azerbaijan's absurd claims on the alleged laying of landmines by Armenia.
The video that Nagorno-Karabakh Police has at its disposal proves that the Azerbaijani military attacked the "UAZ" microbus that carried four employees of the Nagorno-Karabakh Ministry of Internal Affairs, who were on their way from Stepanakert to Hin Shen and Mets Shen villages of Nagorno-Karabakh. Moreover, the videos prove that there was nothing in the microbus except official documents and a service pistol.
The actions of the Azerbaijani forces cannot be described as anything other than terrorism. In parallel to blocking the Lachin corridor and creating a humanitarian crisis in Nagorno-Karabakh for almost three months, Azerbaijan continues to terrorise the Armenians of Artsakh by creating inhumane conditions for living in their homeland with the ultimate goal of ethnic cleansing.
It is noteworthy that after the International Court of Justice on February 22 granted Armenia’s request to apply a provisional measure against Azerbaijan, the Azerbaijani side not only did not take steps towards the implementation of the legally binding decision of the Court but committed new crimes against Armenians of Artsakh, including civilians. On February 28, the Azerbaijani armed forces opened fire on a resident of the village of Myurishen, Martuni region of Artsakh, who was carrying out agricultural work. The ceasefire was also violated by the Azerbaijani armed forces on March 2 and on the night of March 2-3, from the territories of Askeran, Martakert and Martuni regions under Azerbaijani control.
The mentioned actions of Azerbaijan are the practical denial of Baku’s sincerity regarding the establishment of peace and stability in the region. This once again shows the need for guarantees for ensuring the rights and security of the population of Nagorno-Karabakh and the international involvement in them.
The Republic of Armenia calls on the international community, countries and international organisations interested in the establishment of real peace in our region to strongly condemn the use of force and the threat of force by Azerbaijan, as well as another manifestation of provoking large-scale hostilities and take active steps to prevent further violations of Azerbaijan’s own international obligations.
Under current circumstances, sending an international fact-finding mission to the Lachin corridor and Nagorno-Karabakh becomes a vital necessity.