Armenia and Azerbaijan exchanged fire on July 28, resulting in the deadliest clash since a Russia-brokered ceasefire ended the 44-day war between Armenia and Azerbaijan in November 2020. The two countries blamed each other for starting the shoot-out and violating the November ceasefire agreement.
According to Azerbaijan's Ministry of Defense, at least two Azerbaijanian servicemen were wounded. While the Armenian Defense Ministry said three Armenian servicemen were killed and four wounded. The most recent clashes come just days after the two countries traded fire near the Armenian village of Yeraskh and the Azerbaijani village of Heydarabad.
Leyla Abdullayeva, spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Azerbaijan said in a tweet that Armenia bore the responsibility for recent clashes:
According to @wwwmodgovaz positions of the Azerbaijani Army were again subjected to fire on Kalbajar section of the #Armenia-#Azerbaijan state border. 2 servicemen wounded. Armenia bears full responsibility for the escalation of tensions along the state border of two states!
— Leyla Abdullayeva (@LAbdullayevaMFA) July 28, 2021
Meanwhile, Armenia's Ministry of Defense said, “All responsibility for the aggravation of the situation lies with the military-political leadership of Azerbaijan.” While the country's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that “the Azerbaijani side has been deliberately initiating escalation.”
Later that day, both sides agreed to deescalate tensions in a move proposed by Russia.
Earlier in July, both the EU and the US urged the two sides to reduce tensions.
Deeply worrying developments continue on – state border. Reiterate our call for restraint and separation of forces & constructive engagement on border issues before new casualties are registered. stands ready to assist the sides.
— Toivo Klaar (@ToivoKlaar) July 20, 2021
Միացյալ Նահանգները մտահոգված է Հայաստանի և Ադրբեջանի սահմանի երկայնքով գրանցվող միջադեպերով, հատկապես՝…
Posted by U.S. Embassy Yerevan on Tuesday, July 20, 2021
Last year's war claimed at least 6,900 lives. The ceasefire signed in November saw Azerbaijan regain control over all seven adjacent districts and parts of Nagorno-Karabakh previously controlled by ethnic Armenians.