Nagorno-Karabakh: ‘Three dead’ in attack at Azerbaijan cemetery

Azerbaijan claims Armenia targeted people visiting a cemetery in Tartar as hostilities over breakaway region continue.

A building that was purportedly damaged by recent shelling during the fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh, in the Azeri Tartar region [File: Aziz Karimov/AP]

At least three people have been killed while visiting a cemetery in Tartar, western Azerbaijan, according to the foreign policy aide to the Azerbaijani president.

Hikmet Hajiyev, writing on Twitter, said at least five people were also wounded in the attack on Thursday, which he blamed on Armenia.

“Does city graveyard have any military meaning or necessity?” he wrote. “Armenia’s purpose is just to cause casualties among civilians.

Azerbaijan and Armenia are locked in a battle over the breakaway Nagorno-Karabakh region, which is inside Azerbaijan but run by ethnic Armenians.

By the time of publishing, Armenia had not responded to the claims made regarding Thursday’s attack.

The violence comes days after the rivals agreed to a humanitarian ceasefire after marathon talks in Moscow. That truce, however, was broken minutes after it was meant to go into effect, on Saturday.

Earlier on Thursday, Zohrab Mnatsakanyan, Armenia’s foreign minister, accused Azerbaijan of fresh shelling, without giving further details.

“Five days into the Moscow Joint Statement of 10 October on cessation of fire, and #Azerbaijan continues to torpedo its implementation. With the support & direct involvement of #Turkey and #terrorist fighters they continue large scale war against #Artsakh/#NagornoKarabakh,” he tweeted.

The two countries renewed their decades-long fight on September 27. Since then, dozens of civilians from both sides, along with hundreds of soldiers, have died.