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Baku Says Soldier Killed In Nagorno-Karabakh Despite Cease-Fire


An ethnic Armenian soldier stands next to a cannon at artillery positions near Nagorno-Karabakh's town of Martuni.

An ethnic Armenian soldier stands next to a cannon at artillery positions near Nagorno-Karabakh's town of Martuni.

Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry says one its soldiers was killed in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh on April 14, the first casualty in almost a week following the worst outbreak of violence there for decades.

The ministry said in a statement that the army sergeant was killed while "preventing the enemy's next provocation along the line of contact" that effectively serves as a front line separating Azerbaijani forces from Armenian-backed separatists.

The Armenian-backed Nagorno-Karabakh separatist forces dismissed the claim from Baku, saying it was "disinformation aimed at artificially worsening the situation."

Scores of people were killed during three days of combat in early April in and around the breakaway region.

A Moscow-mediated cease-fire went into effect on April 5, but clashes have continued with two people reportedly killed on April 8.

On April 13, Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev visited Istanbul, where he discussed the situation in Nagorno Karabakh with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan -- a key supporter of Azerbaijan.

Based on reporting by AFP, Interfax, Reuters, and AP
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