By Vafa Ismayilova
A fresh Armenian terrorist attack on Azerbaijan's liberated territory has been strongly condemned in Azerbaijan and abroad.
In the early hours of November 13, 2021, several Azerbaijani servicemen were wounded in the attack committed by members of illegal Armenian armed formations near Shusha city on the Azerbaijani territory currently under Russian peacekeepers' temporary control.
Impunity leading to new threats
On her official Facebook account, Azerbaijani Human Rights Commissioner Sabina Aliyeva strongly denounced the attack and demanded retribution for the offence.
"The terrorist who threw a grenade was detained by Russian peacekeepers. Taking advantage of impunity, another crime committed by members of illegal Armenian armed groups leads to the murder of innocent people, a gross violation of human rights and freedoms, and the emergence of new conflicts. We strongly condemn such actions that create a real threat to the rights and freedoms of people, we demand that the offender be punished accordingly," Aliyeva said.
Meanwhile, U.S. expert Peter Tase described as unprecedented the terrorist attack committed in Dashalti village liberated from Armenian occupation late last year.
“Terrorists behavior and revanchism have many shapes and manifestations in the Armenian society. Equally tragic is the fact that international actors in Europe, the U.S. and in the democratic world do not openly condemn the acts of terrorism inspired by Yerevan's administration committed against the innocent civilians and the Azerbaijani armed forces,” Tase said.
He stressed that the glorification of Armenian terrorists by the Armenian government and its society is a major blunder of large proportions that must be tackled by the international community.
“Armenian terrorism has been exported in the streets of Los Angeles, Paris and Berlin. It is tragic that major global powers are focused on the green economy and environmental issues that affect the planet, but when it comes to addressing the centuries' old Armenian terrorism, U.S. and EU legislators on both sides of the Atlantic prefer to remain quiet,” he further said.
The expert noted that “at the same time, Yerevan continues to operate with impunity and finance acts of terrorism including the provision of financial and political help to ASALA Terrorist Organization. Armenian culture has always cultivated a sense of pride every time when terrorist attacks are committed by Armenian terrorists”.
The U.S. expert stressed that the Azerbaijani armed forces are highly equipped and embody the top level of professionalism when dealing with terrorist attacks.
"The [Azerbaijani] armed forces are a genuine source of patriotism and valor, and a tool of statecraft that serves to safeguard the country's full territorial integrity and sovereignty,” concluded Tase.
Unconditional withdrawal of all Armenian troops
At a news conference held in Shusha on November 13, Russian military expert Igor Korotchenko said that the Armenian terrorist, who committed the attack, must be handed over to the Azerbaijani law-enforcement agencies.
"We, the members of the Russian delegation, are glad to be in the ancient Azerbaijani city of Shusha. Today, when we are discussing stability issues, a terrorist attack was committed in the village of Dashalti. An Armenian terrorist threw a hand grenade at the Azerbaijani and Russian servicemen," Korotchenko said.
The expert added that among the injured, there could have been Russian peacekeepers.
"Maybe this is a latent threat to the Russian delegation, which is here," he said.
According to him, the incident once again emphasizes the need for strict implementation of all points of the trilateral statement.
"There mustn’t be any illegal Armenian armed formations in Karabakh. These terrorist groups are like cancer. We demand the unconditional withdrawal of all illegal armed formations from the territories of Azerbaijan. Otherwise, these sabotage acts will be repeated. Coercive measures must be applied to Armenia. There must be an international response in this regard," he added.
At the same news conference, Director of the Russian Institute for Political Studies Sergei Markov said that terrorist attacks similar to the one committed in Dashalti should not go unpunished.
"Unfortunately, the South Caucasus cannot be called completely peaceful," Markov noted, adding that extremist forces continue attempts to destabilize the region.
Recalling the attack in Dashalti, he stressed that "such actions should in no way go unpunished".
A joint statement earlier issued by the Azerbaijani Prosecutor-General's Office and the Interior Ministry said that Armenian citizen Norayr Mirzoyan,46, and other persons, who previously acquired an RGD-5 grenade, firearms and explosives to commit a terrorist act and premeditated murder on the Azerbaijani territory at 0712 (GMT+4) on November 13, 2021, moved from the Azerbaijani city of Khankandi along the Khankandi-Lachin highway towards Lachin city in a Mercedes-Benz car with the state registration plate 48-MN-048 ER, got out of the car near Dashalti village and threw a grenade towards the servicemen of a military unit of the Azerbaijani armed forces and the Russian peacekeeping contingent, endangering their lives.
As a result of the attack, committed with the aim of premeditated murder on the basis of ethnic hatred, active-duty sergeant Hafiz Nasibov and other servicemen (three in total) received bodily injuries of varying severity.
It should be noted that Baku repeatedly made all the necessary proposals to Yerevan with regard to normalizing the post-war regional situation. Namely - to sign a peace treaty, to recognize each other's territorial integrity and to begin the delimitation and demarcation of borders.
About 2,000 Russian peacekeepers have been deployed for five years in Karabakh under the trilateral cease-fire deal signed by Baku, Moscow and Yerevan on 10 November 2020. The signed agreement brought an end to six weeks of fighting between Armenia.
The peace agreement stipulated the return of Azerbaijan's Armenian-occupied Kalbajar, Aghdam and Lachin regions and urged Armenia to withdraw its troops from the Azerbaijani lands that it has occupied since the early 1990s.
Armenia still fails to withdraw all its troops from Azerbaijan under the ceasefire deal. Before the signing of the deal, the Azerbaijani army had liberated around 300 villages, settlements, city centers, and historic Shusha city.
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