New escalation along the Line of Contact around Nagorny #Karabakh: reports very fluid, so casualties impossible to verify for now, but this appears more similar to April 2016’s ‘4-day war’ than July 2020’s border clash (but all started on a Saturday or Sunday).
Reports of civilian casualties through missile attacks and bombardment on both sides; there are reports of military casualties and destroyed hardware; fighting seems to be focused in Terter/Agdam, Murovdag (Mrav) heights and Fizuli-Jebrayil areas.
Azerbaijani officials are reporting some areas in Fizuli-Jebrayil retaken from Armenian control - reports not confirmed. Perhaps another limited aims operation to recoup some territories before reverting to the status quo? Armenian MoD has pledged counter-attack.
Martial law and mobilization declared in #Armenia and #Karabakh. There had been prior reports of reserve call-ups for training and vehicle confiscations in Azerbaijan. Azerbaijani internet/social media networks appear to be have been largely taken down, except Twitter.
OSCE, Russia, UN, France, Council of Europe have called for restraint and talks; Turkey, as before, declares support for Azerbaijan; mobilization of diasporas, with possible violence, seems likely.
This escalation follows July 2020 clashes and further mounting tensions. No international guarantees operative in combat zone, and there is much more at stake strategically. Risks for regimes across the conflict are huge – military failure could have devastating domestic impacts.
International attention will be focused as long as violence continues. But global conditions of fractured multipolarity both enable such escalations + militate against effective multilateral diplomacy needed to create leverage + confidence in negotiations. Situation v dangerous.
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