Iran tells Armenia, Azerbaijan region cannot afford another war

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Iran says the region cannot take any more of the type of the conflict that has perilously flared up between Azerbaijan and Armenia over Karabakh. 

Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeid Khatibzadeh made the remarks on Monday as Armenian and Azeri forces exchanged fierce fire for a second day amid reports of scores of deaths and hundreds of people being wounded.

On Monday two more rockets landed near homes in a farm on the border region of Khoda-Afarin in northwest Iran.  

Meanwhile, Azerbaijan’s president declared a partial military mobilization.

Interfax news agency quoted an Armenian defense ministry representative as saying 200 Armenians had been wounded.

The Armenian-backed forces in Karabakh reported that 15 more of their fighters had been killed in overnight clashes. They had said on Sunday 16 of their forces had been killed and more than 100 wounded.

Khatibzadeh said the Islamic Republic had asked the two sides to end fighting as fast as possible and enter negotiations to find a solution. 

The fresh flare-up is due to the failure of diplomatic negotiations within the framework of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group, led by France, the US and Russia.

The key sticking point is Azerbaijan’s demand that Armenia withdraw its military forces from Karabakh and let Azeris return to their homes, while Yerevan is apparently satisfied with the stalemate because it allows the status-quo to continue. 

Karabakh is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, but it has an Armenian population because ethnic Azeris fled the territory in 1992 when separatists seized it in a move supported by Yerevan after the collapse of the Soviet Union. 

The new clashes, the heaviest since 2016, have rekindled concern over stability in the South Caucasus region, a corridor for pipelines carrying oil and gas to world markets.

Khatibzadeh said Iran monitors the situation very closely, is in constant contact with the parties to the conflict, and invests all in its power to help remedy the situation.

Source: Press TV

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