By Ayya Lmahamad
Representatives of relevant state bodies and the expert working group began assessing the damage caused to Tovuz region as a result of Armenia’s military provocation, Economy Ministry reported on July 23.
The assessment is made in connection with the implementation of the Presidential Decree “On measures to eliminate the damage caused to the civilian population, state property, including infrastructure facilities in the villages of Tovuz region as a result of intensive shelling”.
Three groups of specialists have already inspected 61 individual houses and farms in the shelled settlements of Tovuz region - Agdam, Dondar Gushchu, Alibeyli, Vahidli, Yukhari Oisuzlu and Ashagi Oisuzlu. The inspection showed that six houses and auxiliary buildings are in emergency condition and require capital construction. In addition, 15 houses and ancillary buildings, as well as stables, were severely damaged and 40 houses and farms suffered minor complications.
Moreover, some farms were severely damaged too as a result of artillery shelling. Thus, 20-25 small cattle animals and 70-75 poultry were killed, 300-350 bales of hay collected for winter storage were completely burned, some cars were seriously damaged by shell splinters, household items and garden crops were damaged in 15 houses.
Thus, the amount and value of damage to houses, outbuildings, private property and arable land, public property and infrastructure is currently being assessed.
Once the damage has been fully identified and assessed, the government will prepare an Action Plan and proposals for the complete elimination of complications, which will be submitted to the President of Azerbaijan.
The cross-border fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan started on July 12 with Armenia's firing artillery at Azerbaijan's positions in the direction of Tovuz region. Azerbaijani army lost 12 servicemen as a result of Armenian attacks. One civilian was killed as a result of artillery fire by the Armenian armed forces.
Azerbaijan and Armenia are locked in a conflict over Azerbaijan’s Nagorno-Karabakh breakaway region, which along with seven adjacent regions was occupied by Armenian forces in a war in the early 1990s. More than 20,000 Azerbaijanis were killed and around one million were displaced as a result of the large-scale hostilities.
The OSCE Minsk Group co-chaired by the United States, Russia and France has been mediating the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict since the signing of the volatile cease-fire agreement in 1994. The Minsk Group’s efforts have resulted in no progress and to this date, Armenia has failed to abide by the UN Security Council resolutions (822, 853, 874 and 884) that demand the withdrawal of Armenian military forces from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan.
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