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ARMENIA REPORTS HEAVY FIGHTING IN NAGORNO-KARABAKH REGION

Azerbaijani ground troops have launched a fresh, large-scale attack on the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, according to Armenia's Defense Ministry, which spoke of "heavy fighting," Christian Thiele reported for Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa) on October 3, 2020.

Troops advanced on the region, held by Christian Armenian separatists, from both the north and the south, said the ministry, which added that three Azerbaijani fighter planes were shot down. It was not immediately possible to verify the report independently.

World powers have been calling for a ceasefire between Azerbaijan and Armenia since Sunday, when fighting over the region, which is officially part of predominantly Muslim Azerbaijan, first re-erupted. Armenian sources have put the death toll from fighting in the region, where about 145,000 people live, at more than 200, while Azerbaijan most recently said that 19 civilians have been killed and 60 injured.

Armenia says that Azerbaijan has brought more troops into the conflict area, which the government in Baku has not confirmed. Azerbaijan and Armenia previously fought a war over Nagorno-Karabakh in the late 1980s and early 1990s as they transitioned into independent countries amid the collapse of the Soviet Union. The war, which ended with a fragile peace treaty in 1994, is estimated to have claimed the lives of tens of thousands of people, including more than a thousand civilians.


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