YEREVAN — Last week saw an escalating set of Azerbaijani military attacks on Armenia. Below are interviews with local authorities, including political leaders, local villagers and journalists in Armenia.
At the start of the week, news of Azerbaijani advances in the border areas of Syunik and Vayots Dzor and the loss of Armenian positions spread. On November 14, an intensive exchange of gunfire took place in the eastern direction along the line of contact between the two countries. At 1 p.m., Azerbaijani soldiers with armored equipment advanced, but the Armenian government only announced this officially the next day, confirming that four military positions had been besieged, but Azerbaijani military equipment and troops left Armenian territory as a result of negotiations. Armenian troops also left the four military positions. That same day, November 15, Armenian Defense Minister Arshak Karapetyan was dismissed and replaced by Suren Papikyan.
Azerbaijan placed checkpoints on the Kapan-Chakaten automobile route in Syunik province at the start of November 15 (midnight), making travel on this road practically impossible. It should be noted that earlier, on November 12, customs posts had been placed on various segments of the Goris-Kapan road. The Armenian National Security Service announced that an alternate route would be ready for use by the end of the year. As a result of the Azerbaijani checkpoints, the fundamental rights of the inhabitants of Chakaten, Srashen, Shikahogh, Nerkin Hand, Tsav and Shishkert have been curtailed.