2020 October 18

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Daily news and anti-corruption report

Oct/18/2020 wrap-up: \\ War in Artsakh Republic (Karabakh) \\ Azerbaijan's war crimes documented; arms dealer sued for aiding \\ Syrian militants taped \\ battlefield & analysis \\ videos \\ demonstrations & donations around the world \\ international response \\ calls to recognize Artsakh Republic
by ar_david_hh

Prior events:

October 17, October 16, October 15, October 14, October 13, October 12, October 11 , October 10, October 9 , October 8 , October 7, October 6, October 5, October 4, October 3, October 2, October 1, September 30, September 29, September 28, September 27.

jihadist's audio communication is intercepted

Another video has been published showing communication between a pro-Azerbaijan Syrian jihadist and a fellow fighter from Sultan Murad terrorist cell.

The call was likely made in the first days of the war. The militant says they were told they'd be taken to Libya but it's been two days and they're sending the men to Azerbaijan instead.

Video: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=998462350656167


about the hospital that Azerbaijan bombed earlier

Russian ANNA military-reporters released a 5-minute documentary from the scene where the Martakert hospital was bombed by Azerbaijan.

Azeris claimed it was a military object and released drone footage of the strike, which is now being used as evidence of their war crime.


about the beheading incident

Azeri soldiers had earlier beheaded an Armenian POW and posted the photo on the internet. The Human Rights Ombudsman says prior to committing the war crime, the perpetrators called the POW's brother to inform him about it.


lawsuit filed against a defense contractor for abetting war crimes

Artsakh Republic and several residents are suing a defense contractor over "war crimes and crimes against humanity." The lawsuit is filed in the U.S. District of Columbia against L3Harris Technologies.

The defendant is accused of continuing to sell military parts to Turkish TB2 drone manufacturer, while being aware of their war crimes, thus abetting war crimes and extrajudicial killings committed by Azerbaijan against the civilian population of Artsakh.

L3Harris also has a branch in Canada, whose cooperation with Turkey was recently suspended by the Canadian government.


October 18 arrives / battlefied / international response

23:31: Soldiers' Rehabilitation Center will have new prosthesis technologies imported from Germany, with the help of Dutch-Armenian donor Garik Khachatryan.


23:32: WarGonzo Russian reporter shared a video showing a large caravan of cars traveling out of Azerbaijan's second-largest city Ganja. The cars are seen escaping the city while driving disorderly, including on the opposite lane.

Artsakh govt had earlier warned Azerbaijan not to use Ganja military objects in the war against Artsakh. Yesterday, Artsakh published the list of military objects located within Ganja city and on the outskirts. A missile strike was carried out yesterday, targeting one of these facilities. Azerbaijan claimed it struck a civilian building.

Artsakh has accused Azeri authorities of using their civilians as live shields and not taking precautionary measures, such as civil defense education for the population, air siren, bomb shelter preparations, etc.

WarGonzo writes: unlike the population of Artsakh, the Azeri civilians aren't used to receiving military strikes deep within the Azeri territories, so their reaction to escape with cars is understandable.

This could even turn into a coup in Baku which has been brewing since this summer. Overall, Aliyev is in a strange situation. He keeps throwing soldiers forward for the sake of proving that Hadrut is under their full control and that our report from the scene (a few days ago) was "false".

Russian ANNA correspondent, citing their associates who had just left the Ganja city, confirm the authenticity of the car caravan video, saying there is currently panic in Ganja and they had to leave, too. "Nothing unusual. Stepanakert was also evacuated with columns of cars."



00:01 ANNA correspondent: the 12 o'clock humanitarian ceasefire has just entered into effect. Stepanakert streets are quiet.


00:03 Artsakh govt: if Azerbaijan respects the ceasefire, we will allow their soldiers, who found themselves encircled, to escape safely.


00:20 Artsakh govt: the front lines are currently calm.


00:37: Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan held a phone conversation with Turkish Foreign Minister to receive instructions and thanked the latter for supporting Azerbaijan's position.


3:32 army: Azerbaijan has once against violated the ceasefire. They launched an artillery fire in the north until 2:45 am and rocket fire in the south between 2:20 - 2:45 am.


7:20 army, MFA, Artsakh govt: despite the ceasefire, Azerbaijan launched an attack in the south again to move along the shores of Araks river towards the Khudafer water reservoir on the border with Iran. The purpose is to assume a favorable position. They could later attempt to use the reservoir as leverage over Iran (the reservoir is used by Iranian farmers).

Both sides sustained casualties during these events. Our goal is to reduce our casualties. Azerbaijan's military-political leadership bears full responsibility for the escalation.

Armenia will continue to take all necessary measures to force a ceasefire.

The best way to establish long-lasting peace is for the international community to recognize the independence of the Artsakh Republic.

https://t.me/ShushanStepanyan/13 , https://t.me/infocomm/23634 , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1031951.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1031956.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1031960.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1031992.html.

Video recording released by Artsakh shows how Azeri soldiers violated the ceasefire and moved towards Armenian positions earlier in the morning.


9:20 Al-Masdar News: "Azerbaijani forces attempt to advance in southern Karabakh despite ceasefire announcement"


9:31: the New York Times correspondent went to Artsakh to document the events. "At Front Lines of a Brutal War: Death and Despair in Nagorno-Karabakh"



9:48 army: we shot 4 Azeri tanks in the south. They mainly used large quantities of artillery and drones.


11:03: international outlets BBC, Al Jazeera, France 24, and others wrote about Azerbaijan's refusal to respect the ceasefire agreement.


11:14: no civilian settlements were bombed in Artsakh last night.


11:33: the names of 40 more deceased soldiers, who died yesterday, were identified and published, bringing the total to 673.


11:47: WarGonzo Russian reporter published a photo from the outskirts of southern city Hadrut, saying there is currently partisan warfare in the area, and that "no one knows the area better than the locals."

The reporter says that his fellow Russians are naive, and haven't been following the Turkey-Azerbaijan cooperation closely if they believe that by having a neutral stance Russia could appease Azerbaijan and later establish a military base there.

https://t.me/wargonzo/3783 , https://t.me/wargonzo/3786

12:06: Yura Melkumyan is one of the residents who lost his home in Shosha after the Azeri bombing on Friday.

Video: https://youtu.be/_194pQ75MOs

Svetlana Baghdasaryan lost her home in Stepanakert

Video: https://youtu.be/rkYo20_C8Cc

12:12 MFA: Aliyev's clan is terrified to reveal the true casualties to its people, hence their latest refusal to allow Red Cross to collect the bodies.


12:13: medals were awarded to several soldiers. Roman Adamyan and Samvel Avanesyan neutralized enemy personnel in the south and helped the team to succeed. Eight more soldiers received similar medals for repelling attacks.


13:32: two businesswomen from Aleppo and Stepanakert joined their sweets-production efforts in Yerevan. The revenue will be donated to www.HimnaDram.org



13:46: Armenians held a demonstration in Barcelona in support of Artsakh.


Yesterday's demonstration in Israel:


14:26: Vrej Kasuni draws satirical caricatures about politics and world events. Here are a few pieces:


14:29: Armenian MFA criticized an official working at the European foreign affairs department for ignoring the bombardment of civilian settlements in Artsakh and only mentioned damage in Azerbaijan.


14:48: David Phillips, Director of the Human Rights Program at Columbia University, gave a lecture and wrote an article for The National Interest about why Erdogan escalates things, how Turkey helped Azerbaijan with recruiting Syrian jihadists, why the Artsakh govt should be present on the negotiating table.


14:56: Artsakh's Urban Development Department has examined the damage in capital Stepanakert and created a plan of action for repairs.


15:07: in other news. A 10-year international embargo on arms sales to Iran has expired. The country plans to purchase weapons, "but no WMDs." Russia plans to discuss arms contracts.




15:10: 30% of homes in Martakert city have received damage from the indiscriminate bombing by Azerbaijan. The city doesn't have gas and electricity at the moment


16:02: Armenian citizens living in Georgia's southern Javakh region began a process to collect volunteers to join Artsakh front lines.


16:27: soldiers and volunteers sent a video from the front lines:


16:40: Carolyn Mugar, the founder of Armenian Tree Project, has donated $1m to Artsakh via www.HimnaDram.org


16:44: Armenians held a silent demonstration in Stockholm.


16:46: another Azeri pilot was buried today. The death toll is being kept secret by the Azerbaijani government. Armenia reported downing an Azeri jet yesterday.


17:00 Pashinyan gave an interview to France 24 outlet, spoke about how Karabakh used its right to hold a referendum and join Armenia in 1988 through peaceful means, how the Soviet Union collapsed amid democratic movements began, how Armenians were massacred in Baku and Sumgayit on ethnic grounds.

"Azerbaijan has been bombing areas of capital Stepanakert that doesn't have military infrastructure or soldiers."


17:35: the army shot 2 Azeri drones.


17:38: farmers continue to harvest corn in the Artsakh Republic.


17:50: Australian-Armenian demonstrators shut down Sydney's Harbor Bridge and demanded the condemnation of Azeri-Turkish aggression.


17:55: European Parliament MP Emmanouil Fragkos has called for an arms embargo on "fascist Turkey that's centralized exclusively in the hands of Erdogan."

He mentioned Turkey's jihadist activities in several countries, including Artsakh. He cited Canada's example of banning the sale of some military tech to Turkey after Armenia filed a complaint.


18:01 ex-MP Sharmazanov: Artsakh has never been part of independent Azerbaijan therefore it's not a "separatist" state. Therefore, it would be more effective to advance the thesis of the full realization of the right to self-determination.


18:10 army: surveillance video recorded a group of Syrian jihadists dressed in Azeri army uniform walking towards Armenian positions. You might guess what happened next.



18:38: over 10,000 Armenians and supporters held a demonstration in Paris to call for the official recognition of the Artsakh Republic. They were joined by WBA boxing champion Arsen Gulamiryan.



French-Armenians shut down central avenues and condemned the aggression against Artsakh.


18:39: Armenians held a flashmob in Napoli, Italy to raise awareness and condemn the Azeri aggression.


19:03: City Council of Paderno Dugnano has unanimously recognized the 1915 Armenian Genocide.


19:17: Artsakh's chief Bishop Pargev went to a hospital to meet soldiers and prayed for their speedy recovery.



19:28: the names of 37 deceased soldiers were identified and published. The death toll is at 700.


19:31: Erdogan criticized the Minsk Group countries and accused the trio of supplying arms to Armenia.


19:45: Just Security portal wrote about the conflict and criticized the U.S. government for inaction in the region, saying that it could lead to the biggest geopolitical shift since the Cold War. It mentioned Turkey's active involvement and the recruitment of Syrian militants.


19:54: Iran has allegedly shot another drone, presumably belonging to Azerbaijan, that intruded into the Iranian territory.


19:55: 89-year-old villager Hovsep grandpa has donated his AMD 1mln savings to Artsakh.


20:05: Pashinyan gave an interview to the Italian Corriere della Sera outlet. "Erdogan is arming Azerbaijan because he wants another genocide." Pashinyan also said he expects Italy to officially acknowledge that Turkey imported jihadists from Syria.



20:06: four German Parliament MPs, including a deputy-president of Parliament, visited Artsakh and gave a press conference.

They called for sanctions against Azerbaijan and Turkey (being the largest opposition party they'll try to influence Parliament to adop a resolution).

They criticized German media for unfair coverage of the conflict, criticized the attack against Armenian churches and civilian settlements, described the events as ethnic cleansing,

https://youtu.be/cat60S01djk , https://factor.am/296942.html , https://factor.am/296948.html , https://youtu.be/V4c5-l4Qnr8

20:12: Armenians held a demonstration in front of BBC headquarters and condemned the biased coverage that favors Azerbaijan.



20:20: army released footage showing the destruction of Azeri equipment and vehicles. One of them is an Israeli-made Sandcat armored vehicle.



20:32: sappers have cleared capital Stepanakert's main public areas from visible bombs and remnants.


21:13: the air defense has shot an Azeri drone above Stepanakert.


21:16: soldiers sent photos from the front lines


21:19: there are three Armenian POWs. The Red Cross has visited them in Azerbaijan.


21:35: footage showing the destruction of an Azeri vehicle column.


22:00 army spokesman's briefing: let's establish the fact that Azerbaijan has once again violated the ceasefire agreement that was mediated by France. The battles resumed in the morning in the same direction.

Azeris attacked in the north, got destroyed, and were thrown back without significant success.

Simultaneously, they attacked in two southern directions. In one location they fell under Armenian artillery fire and routed after losing large quantities of ammo and vehicles. In another southern direction (near Araks river plains) they made some advancement about which we've already spoken about (the water reservoir bordering Iran).

In this war, which is very fierce and dense, focusing on certain locations and area names is not important. It's a 5th generation warfare in which the preservation of specific front lines is not a priority.

Throughout the day, as of 20:30, we shot 9 Azeri drones, 2 of which were in the Republic of Armenia territory. The battles continue.

[He presents Arkadiy Andreasyan, a 2014 battles hero who drafted as a volunteer recently. For several days he fought in the northern front.]

Q: today TASS outlet wrote that Azerbaijan might be willing to transfer some of the bodies of deceased Armenian soldiers from their side, as a unilateral action.

A: I have read that article about the "unilateral transfer". It says a lot about them not wanting to receive their bodies back. They don't care about the bodies.

I do know about the existence of a video showing how boars eat the dead Azeri bodies in swamps.

[Blurred image from the aforementioned boar video for verification. Nothing graphic : https://twitter.com/301_AD/status/1317773916908249090?s=20 ]

Q: earlier an Artsakh official announced that some Azeri soldiers were trapped/encircled, and they promised to let them go if they preserve the ceasefire. Any update?

A: Azeri soldiers do sometimes get trapped in several locations and try to present it as "advancing forward". These kinds of situations do happen. I can't comment on specifics.

We all have one homeland. The battles are heavy. We must all contribute. Glory to our soldiers. We will win.


22:11: European Parliament MP Frank Engel has called for the termination of the already-suspended Turkey-EU membership talks, citing Turkey's hostile actions towards its neighbors and cooperation with jihadists.


22:13: Los Angeles Armenians are currently holding a demonstration at an election fundraiser location attended by President Trump.


22:17: the Council of French Օ դը Սեն has adopted a resolution to condemn the aggression against Armenia and Artsakh.

It talks about Azerbaijan's earlier threats to bomb the nuclear plant in Armenia, the attack against civilian settlements, the recruitment of militants, etc.

It urges the French govt to end the neutral position and take immediate steps against the aggression.


Polish politician Tomasz Lech Buczek launched a petition about "bringing Azerbaijan to the international tribunal for crimes against humanity"



22:35: a group of diasporan Armenians have arrived to join the front lines.


22:59: Lragir writes, citing international sources, that the casualties in the Azeri army is >10,000, and if the public learns about it, there could be an internal conflict.

Azeri users reported on social media that there is an ongoing scam campaign by certain high-ranking military officials.

The army officials extract a body from a battlefield, identify the deceased soldier, then contact the family and demand cash, claiming that the body is still located on the buffer zone and that the dangerous extraction operation requires a certain payment to "special troops". The scam is only pulled if the family is known to be wealthy.


23:07: one of the Azerbaijani small planes, converted into a drone, fell in their own city Sabirabad and was filmed by locals. It's either AN-2 or Chinese FH-98.

Video: https://t.me/sashakots/17462

23:12 President Sarkissian: Armenia will officially recognize the Artsakh Republic if it becomes clear that Azerbaijan has no plans to return to the negotiating table.


23:21 Pashinyan on Twitter: Artsakh has never been part of the independent state of Azerbaijan and the latter’s territorial claims have no base under international law. Prevent Genocide. Recognize Artsakh.


23:23: the mayors of southern Qajaran and Meghri cities of Armenia have called for 20-60-year-old residents to volunteer for the army.


Russian-language documentary: "Karabakh. Dark Days"


COVID stats

+4,096 tested. +1,694 infected. +14 deaths. +179 healed. 15,193 active.



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Donations to www.HimnaDram.org or www.ArmeniaFund.org (US tax-deductible)

Link to original report and comments: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/jdo9d0/oct182020_wrapup_war_in_artsakh_republic_karabakh/

Disclaimer: All the accused are innocent until proven guilty by the court of law, even if they may sound as being guilty. Currency in Armenian Drams ֏ unless specified otherwise. Helpful overview of Armenia's media ownership and leanings.

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2020 Daily Armenia Reports