The Iranian armed forces have continued stepping up their presence in the country’s northern areas adjacent to the conflict zone in Nagorno-Karabakh, the IRNA news agency reported on Wednesday, citing military sources.
According to the report, the 321st unit of the Iranian ground forces has been deployed to the northeastern border, which is shared with Armenia, Azerbaijan and Turkey.
Iran has repeatedly complained about munitions from the conflict zone crossing into its own territory and warned the warring parties it would respond accordingly if they continue to undermine the Islamic Republic’s security. Several detachments of Iranian air defence forces and ground forces had been pulled to the northeastern borderline in the period of 23-25 October.
At the same time, Tehran has called upon the warring parties to stop fighting and engage in peace talks. On 27 October, the Iranian president’s special envoy Abbas Araghchi began a regional tour in a bid to promote Tehran’s own plan of political settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Araghchi is now in Azerbaijan, from where he is expected to travel to Armenia, as well as Russia and Turkey.
Last week, Iran began stepping up its military presence in its borderline areas close to Nagorno-Karabakh, an Armenian-populated enclave inside Azerbaijan which exercises de facto independence.
© AP PHOTO / MAJID ASGARIPOUR, FILEIran Holds Army Ground Force Drill in Border Area as Azerbaijani-Armenian Karabakh Conflict Persists
The armed hostilities between the Azerbaijani and Armenian forces have been continuing since 27 September, with Armenia and Azerbaijan accusing each other of starting the military action. The international community has strongly condemned the escalation and called on parties to settle the differences via dialogue. However, Turkey has pledged its full support for Azerbaijan.
The parties have since agreed to three humanitarian ceasefires but all were broken mere hours after coming into force. The warring sides have continued to accuse each other of provocations and attacks on civilian settlements. The tensions began when the region broke off from the Azerbaijani Soviet Socialist Republic in 1988.
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