PM: April battles â€“ a victorious page of Azerbaijanâ€™s military history
- 17 March 2017
The April battles are a victorious page of Azerbaijan’s military history, Azerbaijan’s Prime Minister Artur Rasizade said at the parliament’s plenary session on Friday, APA reported.
On the night of April 2, 2016, all the frontier positions of Azerbaijan were subjected to heavy fire from the Armenian side, which used large-caliber weapons, mortars and grenade launchers.
Azerbaijan responded with a counter-attack, which led to liberation of several strategic heights and settlements. Military operations were stopped on the line of contact between Azerbaijani and Armenian armies on Apr. 5 at 12:00 (UTC/GMT + 4 hours) with the consent of the sides, Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry earlier said.
“I’d like to emphasize the care and attention given to the Armed Forces by Azerbaijani President, Supreme Commander-in-Chief Ilham Aliyev. Today, the provision of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces with modern local-made and exported weapons allows fulfilling strategic tasks along with tactical goals,” said the prime minister.
He noted that the decisive response given to the recent provocation of the Armenian aggressors showed the high fighting spirit of the Azerbaijani Army.
“The combat operations in April have demonstrated that along with negotiations, there is also a possibility to liberate the occupied Azerbaijani territories by military means,” Rasizade added.
The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict entered its modern phase when the Armenian SRR made territorial claims against the Azerbaijani SSR in 1988.
A fierce war broke out between Azerbaijan and Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan. As a result of the war, Armenian armed forces occupied some 20 percent of Azerbaijani territory which includes Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent districts (Lachin, Kalbajar, Aghdam, Fuzuli, Jabrayil, Gubadli and Zangilan), and over a million Azerbaijanis became refugees and internally displaced people.
The military operations finally came to an end when Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in Bishkek in 1994.
Dealing with the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is the OSCE Minsk Group, which was created after the meeting of the CSCE (OSCE after the Budapest summit held in Dec.1994) Ministerial Council in Helsinki on 24 March 1992. The Group’s members include Azerbaijan, Armenia, Russia, the United States, France, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Belarus, Finland and Sweden.
Besides, the OSCE Minsk Group has a co-chairmanship institution, comprised of Russian, the US and French co-chairs, which began operating in 1996.
Resolutions 822, 853, 874 and 884 of the UN Security Council, which were passed in short intervals in 1993, and other resolutions adopted by the UN General Assembly, PACE, OSCE, OIC, and other organizations require Armenia to unconditionally withdraw its troops from Nagorno-Karabakh.