YEREVAN — Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on Monday further questioned Azerbaijan’s narrative concerning Nagorno-Karabakh as he reacted to a reported shooting by Azeri soldiers at Karabakh farmers working in the field over the weekend.
Armenian authorities in Nagorno-Karabakh said on Saturday that one civilian was injured while carrying out agricultural work near the village of Khramort in the east of the region.
They said the 45-year-old farmer was harmed by fragments of the windshields of a tractor fired at from nearby Azerbaijani military positions and that another Armenian farmer was also present there during the attack.
Officials in Stepanakert said the Russian peacekeepers were informed about the incident. The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed the incident.
The Russian Defense Ministry also confirmed a similar incident in Nagorno-Karabakh a week before when Stepanakert said Azerbaijani armed forces opened fire at a civilian’s tractor in the same area.
The latest incident prompted the Armenian leader to post a comment on Twitter countering statements by Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev that the Karabakh conflict “has been solved” and “is now history.”
“Azerbaijan calls Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh ‘our citizens’ and, at the same time, shoots at them while they are doing agricultural work,” Pashinyan wrote.
The Armenian premier said that three civilians have been killed and 16 wounded since Armenia and Azerbaijan signed a Russia-brokered ceasefire agreement on November 9, 2020. There were, according to him another 54 cases of “attempted murder.”
“Is this the implementation of Azerbaijan’s narrative saying ‘the Nagorno-Karabakh issue is solved’?” Pashinyan queried.
In his remarks late last week the Armenian leader accused Azerbaijan of planning to cut a transport link between Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia known as the Lachin corridor and seeking to end the presence of Russian peacekeepers in the region. He argued that this was an indication that Baku was “preparing the ground for a genocide” against Karabakh Armenians.