Fighting rages as Armenia, Azerbaijan engage in talks: Live news

After almost one month of fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh, dozens of civilians and hundreds of soldiers have been killed.

The mayor of the city of Martakert stands inside a building destroyed by shelling in Martakert [Aris Messinis/AFP]
  • Fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh continues for the fourth week.
  • Azerbaijan claims it has taken control of multiple territories.
  • Armenia President Armen Sarkissian visiting Brussels for talks with EU, NATO officials.
  • Azeri, Armenian foreign ministers in Moscow, headed to the US on Friday.


18:30 GMT – Turkey says it will send troops to help Azerbaijan if requested

Turkey will not hesitate to send soldiers and provide military support for Azerbaijan if such a request is made by Baku, Vice President Fuat Okaty said, adding there was no such request at the moment.

Turkey has vowed full solidarity with Azerbaijan and has accused Yerevan of occupying Azeri lands.

Speaking in an interview with broadcaster CNN Turk, Oktay also criticised the OSCE’s Minsk group – formed to mediate the conflict and led by France, Russia and the United States – of trying to keep the issue unresolved and supporting Armenia, both politically and militarily.

16:00 GMT – Armenian PM urges forming more volunteer units amid conflict

Armenia’s prime minister urged citizens to sign up as military volunteers to help defend the country.

Speaking in a live video address on Facebook, Nikol Pashinian said that all Armenians must “take up arms and defend the Motherland” and urged local mayors to organize volunteer units.

14:22 GMT – ‘For me, there is no life any more’: Victim speaks out

The man pictured in a powerful image after an attack on Ganja, Azerbaijan, has spoken to media about his painful experience. Timur Xaligov lost five members of his family.

Timur Xaligov carries his 10-months-old daughter, Narin, who was killed with five other relatives, including her mother Sevil, when a rocket hit their home in the city of Ganja [Umit Bektas/Reuters] (Reuters)

12:37 GMT – It has been almost one month of fighting and a lot has happened…

…so we have put together an explainer for you. Here are five key things to know about the crisis.

12:23 GMT – Armenian prime minister says no diplomatic solution

Nikol Pashinyan has said there is no room for a diplomatic solution at the moment, according to Reuters.

“Everything that is diplomatically acceptable to the Armenian side … is not acceptable to Azerbaijan any more,” Pashinyan said.

But he also told Iran’s IRNA news agency that he welcomed any constructive measure initiated by Tehran to establish peace and stability in the region.

10:25 GMT – Azerbaijan downs another Armenian drone: Anadolu

Azerbaijan has shot down an Armenian unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), the country’s Ministry of Defence announced, according to Turkey’s Anadolu news agency.

“On October 21, at about 12:00 pm local time (8.00 GMT), another UAV belonging to the Armenian Armed Forces was destroyed by our Air Defense Units over the Horadiz city,” the ministry said in a statement.

The forces had also destroyed two Armenian drones on Tuesday, one over Azerbaijan’s second-largest city of Ganja and the other over the Goranboy region, according to the ministry.

09:00 GMT – Nagorno-Karabakh struggles to fight virus

Ararat Ohanjanyan, an ethnic Armenian health official in Nagorno-Karabakh, on Monday said local medical workers had no time or resources to deal with the outbreak for the first two weeks after the latest escalation of fighting started on September 27.

“For about 10 days during heavy shelling of Stepanakert we didn’t have time to track down those infected patients, and it allowed contagion to spread in quicker than usual. However now the situation will be under control,” he said.

Ohanjanyan said medical facilities in the region were overwhelmed with those wounded in the fighting.

09:13 GMT – Armenian, Azeri foreign ministers in Moscow, prepare for US talks

The foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan were in Moscow on Wednesday for meetings with Russia’s top diplomat Sergey Lavrov.

The ministers were visiting the Russian capital, their respective ministries said as the pair are due to meet US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday.

They have ruled out a trilateral meeting and will meet Pompeo separately.

Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov arrived in Moscow for “consultations with the Russian side”, the ministry said in a statement.

His Armenian counterpart Zohrab Mnatsakanyan was set to meet Lavrov in Moscow “to discuss the situation in Karabakh and the implementation of a ceasefire agreement”, ministry spokeswoman Anna Nagdalyan said.

It was not immediately clear if the two diplomats would meet Lavrov jointly or separately.

08:40 GMT – Azerbaijan PM claims ‘new victories’ in televised speech

Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev on Tuesday said the Azerbaijani army had taken control of the Zangilan area and other settlements in Nagorno-Karabakh.

“The victorious Azerbaijani army is gaining new victories on the battlefield. These victories make every Azerbaijani citizen happy,” he said in a televised address.

Aliyev said 24 villages in Zangilan, Jabrayil, Fizuli and Khojavend districts were now controlled by the Azerbaijani army.

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev gestures as he addresses the nation in Baku, Azerbaijan [Azerbaijani Presidential Press Office/AP]

08:15 GMT – Shelling continues

Fighting continued in Nagorno-Karabakh on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning according to Armenia and Azerbaijan.

Azerbaijan authorities claimed its army was advancing in the Jabrayil and Gubadlin directions causing deaths among the Armenian army and capturing its military equipment.

Video footage shared by the Azerbaijan Ministry of Defence showed heavy artillery and rockets being fired by Azerbaijani forces.

08:40 GMT – Armenian president to discuss Nagorno-Karabakh with EU, NATO

Armenian President Armen Sarkissian has left for Brussels to discuss the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with NATO and European Union officials, his office said.

During the visit he will meet NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell and European Council President Charles Michel, it said.

Armenia expects NATO and EU leaders to do “everything possible” to stop the fighting and to “bring to life” a ceasefire deal, it said.

Good morning. Usaid Siddiqui in Doha and Anealla Safdar in London will be bringing you the latest updates on the Nagorno-Karabakh crisis today, Wednesday, October 21.

Here is a quick recap:

Fighting in Nagorno Karabakh has spilled into a fourth week, with no sign of a let-up as Armenia and Azerbaijan continue their clash over the disputed region despite two attempts at a humanitarian truce.

The two sides accuse one another of causing civilian and military casualties. To date, at least 63 Azerbaijanis have died and 36 ethnic Armenians, along with hundreds of soldiers.

The Armenian president will be in Brussels on Wednesday to discuss the conflict with NATO and EU officials. More on that later.

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies