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‘Support both on and off the battlefield’: Turkey throws weight behind ‘brotherly Azerbaijan,’ in fresh escalation

‘Support both on and off the battlefield’: Turkey throws weight behind ‘brotherly Azerbaijan,’ in fresh escalation
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu announced on Tuesday that Ankara will stand by Azerbaijan in the face of what he described as “Armenian aggression,” and offered both diplomatic and military assistance.

Speaking after a visit to the Azerbaijani embassy in Ankara, Çavuşoğlu told the press that the only way the fighting will end is if Yerevan rolls back on the ‘occupation’ of Nagorno-Karabakh. On Monday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed similar sentiments. 

“We talked about the aggression of Armenia and shared our thoughts on how it should be resolved,” said Çavuşoğlu. “There is only one solution: Armenia will withdraw from the territories it occupies. UN resolutions on the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan are clear.”

Also on rt.com Time to end 'occupation' of Nagorno-Karabakh, Turkish leader Erdogan tells Armenia as border clashes with Azerbaijan continue

The foreign minister also pledged Turkey’s support for Azerbaijan away from the battlefield, offering the use of Turkish representatives in countries where there is no Azerbaijani embassy.

Fighting broke out on Sunday, when Azeri and ethnic Armenian soldiers exchanged fire. The region of Nagorno-Karabakh is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, but is populated by ethnic Armenians. Baku considers the enclave to be illegally occupied by Yerevan. In the past two days, reports of both military and civilian casualties have reached double figures.

The long-term foes have used an array of heavy artillery, tanks, rocket launchers, and drones against each other in the past few days.

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