By Nazrin Gadimova
Baku has sent a note of protest to Moscow over illegal sale of weapons to Armenia.
Hikmet Hajiyev, spokesperson for the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry, made the remarks commenting on the loan agreement signed between Russia and Armenia on providing $200 million preferential loan to Armenia for the purchase of Russian-made military equipment.
“Azerbaijan has repeatedly brought to the attention of the international community irrefutable facts that the weapons and military equipment purchased by Armenia are dislocated in the occupied Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan,” the note of protest reads.
Yerevan, by placing these weapons in the occupied territories without the consent of the exporting country [Russia], grossly violates its international legal obligations, as well as the weapons control regime and transparency.
“Thus, Armenia is strengthening its military presence in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan,” Hajiyev said, adding that Azerbaijan wants Russia to give guarantees on non-use of the military equipment on the occupied Azerbaijani territories, as well as along the Azerbaijan-Armenia border.
For over two decades, Azerbaijan and Armenia have been locked in conflict which emerged over Armenia's territorial claims against its South Caucasus neighbor. Since a war in the early 1990s, Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan's territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven surrounding regions.
A fragile ceasefire has been in place since 1994, but long-standing efforts by U.S., Russian and French mediators have been largely fruitless so far. Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's four resolutions on its pullout from the neighboring country's territories.
Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz