By Ayya Lmahamad
The European Union has condemned the Armenian attack on Azerbaijan’s Ganja city that killed 13 civilians and injured 52 others.
"The European Union deplores the strikes on the Azerbaijani city of Ganja during the night of 16-17 October resulting in civilian loss of life and serious injury. All targeting of civilians and civilian installations by either party must stop. The ceasefire of 10 October must be fully respected without delay," the European Union said in a statement published on October 17.
EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Joseph Borrell issued a separate statement on October 18 condemning the attack.
"(...) The EU deplores that, unfortunately, violations continue, with reported fighting in and around Nagorno Karabakh. This leads to more civilian suffering. It aggravates the conflict between States and respective societies, rendering the healing of wounds even more difficult. The population in Nagorno Karabakh has already experienced excessive suffering. Overall, the conflict has led to extensive and unacceptable civilian casualties. The EU strongly condemns all such attacks irrespective of their origin," the statement reads.
Borrell stressed the immediate need to stop attacks on civilians, underling that the EU remains ready to support the parties and the OSCE in a long-term solution to the conflict.
The Armenian attack on civilians was also discussed during the phone conversation between Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Ceyhun Bayramov and Joseph Borrell on October 18.
During the meeting, Bayramov underlined that Armenian armed forces attacked the Azerbaijani positions in the direction of the Jabrayil region, as well artillery shelled Gadabay and Tovuz regions of Azerbaijan on the border of two states despite the second humanitarian truce agreed on Saturday.
Bayramov stressed that Armenia's leadership bears responsibility for this war crime.
In turn, Borrell stressed the inadmissibility of targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure, referring to the statement made by EU spokesperson on the Ganja city.
Moreover, he highlighted the importance of implementing the humanitarian truce agreed by both sides, noting the necessity of substantial negotiations for the settlement of the conflict.
Armenian armed forces launched a large-scale operation in the front-line zone on September 27 at 6 am, shelling the positions of the Azerbaijani army from large-calibre weapons, mortars, and artillery installations of various calibres. Armenia has been targeting Azerbaijan’s densely populated areas and infrastructure projects.
Ayya Lmahamad is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @AyyaLmahamad
Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz