A view shows aftermath of recent shelling in Nagorno-Karabakh region on Sunday. AFP
Armenia and Azerbaijan accused each other on Monday of attacking civilian areas on a ninth day of fighting, the deadliest in the South Caucasus region for more than 25 years.
Hundreds of people have been killed in the latest outbreak of war over Nagorno-Karabakh, a mountain enclave that belongs to Azerbaijan under international law but is populated and governed by ethnic Armenians.
Nagorno-Karabakh said Azeri forces launched rocket strikes on its capital Stepanakert, while Azerbaijan said Armenia fired missiles at several towns outside the breakaway region.
A view shows aftermath of recent shelling during the ongoing fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan on Sunday. AFP
"The enemy is firing rockets at Stepanakert and Shushi. The Defence Army response will not be long in coming," said Vahram Pogosyan, a spokesman for the Nagorno-Karabakh leader.
"Tense fights are in progress," said Armenian defence ministry spokeswoman Shushan Stepanyan.
Azerbaijan said that Armenia had been launching missile attacks against densely populated areas and civilian infrastructure in Azerbaijan. The Azeri defence ministry said its radar system recorded that launches were made from the territory of Armenia.
"It is fake and complete misinformation that Armenia opened fire on Azeri strongholds," said Artrsun Hovhannisyan, an Armenian defence ministry official.
The clashes are the worst since the 1990s, when some 30,000 people were killed, and are spreading beyond the Nagorno-Karabakh enclave. They have raised international concern about stability in the South Caucasus, where pipelines carry Azeri oil and gas to world markets.
The conflict threatens to drag in other regional powers as Azerbaijan is supported by Turkey, while Armenia has a defence pact with Russia.Reuters
Yerevan, Capital of Armenia, said Nagorno-Karabakh's main city Stepanakert, which has been under artillery fire since Friday, was hit again on Sunday and AFP journalists said there were regular explosions and smoke rising in parts of the city.
Azerbaijan and Armenia accused each other on Saturday of attacks in violation of a Russian-brokered truce, as the worst fighting in the South Caucasus since the 1990s continued.
Fighting has continued overnight between Azerbaijan and its ethnic Armenian mountain enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh, the Azeri defence ministry said on Tuesday, in the fiercest round of the decades-old conflict in more than a quarter of a century.
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