Armenia, Azerbaijan urged to honour ceasefire deal

  • Heavy fighting continues on Tuesday as international community appeals for calm
  • More than 500 people have been killed in since fighting began on September 27
  • Red Cross calls on both sides to finalise prisoner and body swap agreements

    14:30 GMT – Video of Azeri, Armenian forces exchanging fire fake

    A widely shared video purporting to show Iranians watch as Azeri and Armenian forces exchange rocket fire has been debunked as fake, a timely reminder that not everything posted on social media is to be taken as truth.

    12:40 GMT – US Secretary of State urges implementation of ceasefire

    United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo call for Armenia and Azerbaijan to implement the agreed-upon ceasefire brokered by Russia last week, and to stop targeting civilian areas.

    “We (US) deplore the loss of human life and remain committed to a peaceful settlement,” Pompeo said.

    12:23 GMT – Analysis: Nagorno-Karabakh – New weapons for an old conflict spell danger

    The new war over Nagorno-Karabakh is a conventional one, being fought by professional armed forces.

    But this time, hi-tech 21st-century weaponry has the capacity to make this decades-old conflict more destructive than ever before.

    If official battlefield statistics are to be believed, the death toll is staggering. Azerbaijan has yet to confirm the number of its war dead.

    11:45 GMT – Turkey says ceasefire calls reasonable, but Armenian withdrawal needed

    Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said international calls for a ceasefire between Azeri and Armenian forces in the Nagorno-Karabakh region were reasonable, but world powers should also urge Armenia to withdraw from Azeri lands.

    Speaking at a news conference with his Swedish counterpart Ann Linde in Ankara, Cavusoglu said holding a meeting with all 11 members of the Minsk group – formed to mediate the conflict and led by Russia, the United States and France – would benefit talks on the issue.

    11:05 GMT – Drone crashes in Iran, near border with Azerbaijan

    A drone has crashed on Iranian soil in the northwestern province of Ardebil in an area close to the border with Azerbaijan.

    According to a local official who spoke with state-run IRNA, the unidentified drone crashed on agricultural lands in a village in the county of Parsabad and inflicted no damage.

    There is speculation online that the drone could be an Israeli Harop operated by the Azerbaijani army.

    10:40 GMT – Red Cross urges Armenia, Azerbaijan to firm up prisoner, body swap

    The International Committee of the Red Cross urged Armenia and Azerbaijan to finalise arrangements for it to handle the exchange of detainees and bodies from the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, after a humanitarian ceasefire agreed at the weekend.

    “To date we keep discussing intensely with the sides on this topic. But no meaningful agreement has been reached yet that will allow us to actually proceed to such an exchange,” Martin Schuepp, ICRC Eurasia regional director, told a news briefing in Geneva, adding that it was passing proposals “back and forth”.

    “So discussions are going on with the sides, and we hope that the conditions will be met in order to actually implement such an operation in the future,” he said, also calling for security guarantees to be provided for ICRC staff.

    09:40 GMT – Nagorno-Karabakh says 17 more servicemen killed

    Ethnic Armenian officials in Nagorno-Karabakh said 17 more servicemen had been killed in fighting with Azerbaijan, bringing its total military death toll to 542 since fighting broke out on September 27, Russia’s Interfax news agency reported.

    The fighting has surged to its worst level since the 1990s, when some 30,000 people were killed.

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