The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan issued a statement strongly condemning the provocation perpetrated by a reconnaissance group of Armenian armed forces on the state border of Armenia and Azerbaijan on December 29th.
The statement reads:
"Instead of taking concrete steps for the resolution of the conflict and engaging in substantive talks according to the discussions at the meetings of Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan in Vienna and Sank-Petersburg, Armenia tries by means of different provocative actions to undermine the negotiations, to continue its policy of aggression against Azerbaijan, as well as to strengthen its military presence in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan and by attempting to involve the third parties to the conflict to maintain the status-quo."
Azerbaijan has repeatedly stated that the continuation of Armenian aggression against Azerbaijan and the presence of Armenian armed forces in the occupied sovereign territories of Azerbaijan remains the major threat to regional peace and security and is the main cause of cease fire violations.The escalation of the situation last April at the hands of Armenia nearly widened into a regional conflagration.
"The Republic of Azerbaijan with the aim of eliminating the consequences of Armenian aggression and occupation of its territories, ensuring its territorial integrity and sovereignty will continue its efforts and the substantial negotiations jointly with the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs for the settlement of the conflict on the basis of the norms and principals of international law and the relevant resolutions of the United Nations Security Council and the Helsinki Final Act," the statement concludes.
Note: On December 29th, a reconnaissance group of the Armenian Armed Forces attempted to violate the Azerbaijan-Armenia state border. Following a fire fight, the Armenian units were forced to retreat, suffering loses, reported Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry.
A soldier of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces, Gurbanov Chingiz, was killed and his body remains on the territory controlled by the Armenian forces.
Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry appealed to the ICRC Azerbaijan Delegation, the OSCE Minsk Group, and Andrzej Kasprzyk, Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, to receive the body of the fallen soldier.