An Armenian soldier was killed in a shootout at the Armenian-Azerbaijani border in Armenia’s Gegharkunik Province, the press service of the Armenian Defense Ministry said on Monday.
“At about 18:10 local time on November 22, Azerbaijani troops opened fire with firearms of various calibers at the Armenian positions at the Armenian-Azerbaijani border near the village of Norabak in Gegharkunik Province. As a result of the Azerbaijani provocation, an Armenian soldier was killed,” the ministry announced, adding that the shooting was over by 19:30 local time.
Following the ceasefire in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone last autumn, control over seven provinces adjunct to Nagorno-Karabakh came over to Azerbaijan and Armenia’s Syunik and Gegharkunik Provinces became adjacent to the border. The situation there deteriorated on May 12, when Armenia’s defense ministry said that Azerbaijani armed forces had tried to carry out “certain works” in a border area in Syunik Province in a bid to “adjust the border. Since then, the sides have been reporting border incidents from time to time.
On November 16, skirmishes between Armenian and Azerbaijani armies broke out in border areas in Syunik Province. Yerevan accused Azerbaijan of staging an offensive into Armenia’s territory, while Baku stated that Armenian troops had attacked Azerbaijani posts. Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu had telephone conversations with his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts later on that day, Yerevan and Baku took measures to stabilize the situation. However, the sides continue to report random skirmishes at the border.