Nagorno-Karabakh: Azerbaijan ‘Takes Key Town’ In Armenia Conflict

Azerbaijan has captured a key town in the separatist Nagorno-Karabakh region, according to the country’s president.

Ilham Aliyev announced that Azerbaijani forces had taken Shusha, known as Shushi in Armenian.

Armenia however denied the town’s capture and said fighting was ongoing.

Capturing the strategically important town would be a major victory for Azerbaijan in the ongoing conflict over the disputed territory.

Nagorno-Karabakh is internationally recognised as part of Azerbaijan, but is governed by ethnic Armenians backed by the Armenian government.

A war between the two countries over the region ended in 1994 with a truce but no peace deal.

Fresh fighting erupted in September, with each side blaming the other for the outbreak in violence.

Shusha sits on hills above the territory’s capital Stepanakert (known as Khankendi in Azerbaijan) and lies on the road linking the city with Armenian territory. If captured it could serve as a staging post for an assault on the capital.

President Aliyev said the “liberation” of Shusha would “go down in the history of the Azerbaijani people”.

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