STEPANAKERT (Combined Sources) — Nagorno-Karabakh’s leadership on Monday, March 6, warned local residents to brace themselves for more Azerbaijani “provocations” following Sunday’s armed incident near Stepanakert that left five people dead.
“The vast majority of our people agree that we will not deviate from our right to self-determination and independence, and that means we are going to deal with various developments and situations soon,” Arayik Harutyunyan, the Karabakh president, told an emergency meeting with other officials in Stepanakert.
Three of the victims were Karabakh police officers. According to the authorities in Stepanakert, a car carrying them was ambushed by an Azerbaijani sabotage group that was then repelled by Karabakh soldiers deployed nearby.
Armenia released a video of the shooting and its aftermath.
The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed on Monday that the Azerbaijani forces were the first to open fire at the Karabakh police vehicle and that two of them were killed in the ensuing firefight which it said was stopped by Russian peacekeepers stationed in Karabakh.
The Russian Foreign Ministry expressed “serious concern” at the incident but did not blame either party for it.