A cluster bomb dropped in Stepanakert

Amnesty International Calls out Azerbaijan’s Use of Banned Cluster Bombs in Artsakh

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LONDON — Protection of civilians caught in the escalating conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) region must be prioritized, Amnesty International said on Monday, October 5, after corroborating the use of banned cluster bombs in the region.

“Over the weekend, footage consistent with the use of cluster munitions in the city of Stepanakert, the capital of Nagorno-Karabakh, was published by the region’s de facto authorities. They also reported an unidentified number of civilian casualties after further shelling in Stepanakert and the town of Shushi.

“Amnesty International’s Crisis Response experts were able to trace the location of the footage to residential areas of Stepanakert, and identified Israeli-made M095 DPICM cluster munitions that appear to have been fired by Azerbaijani forces,” the watchdog said.

“The use of cluster bombs in any circumstances is banned under international humanitarian law, so their use to attack civilian areas is particularly dangerous and will only lead to further deaths and injuries,” said Denis Krivosheev, Amnesty International’s acting Head of Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

“Cluster bombs are inherently indiscriminate weapons, and their deployment in residential areas is absolutely appalling and unacceptable. As fighting continues to escalate, civilians must be protected, not deliberately targeted or recklessly endangered.”

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Amnesty International says it has called on all sides to the conflict to fully respect international humanitarian law, and to protect civilians from the effects of hostilities.

In related news, Panorama.am reported that Armenian Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan on Monday held a phone conversation with US Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun.

The sides exchanged views on the recent developments in the Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) conflict zone, the Foreign Ministry reported.

Mnatsakanyan briefed Biegun on deliberate targeting of the civilian population and infrastructures by Azerbaijan’s armed forces, resulting in human casualties and material damages.

The foreign minister drew the attention of the US.official to use of weaponry, prohibited by relevant international conventions, by Azerbaijan during the military hostilities, and strongly condemned those actions.

 

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