Azerbaijan hands over 5 Armenian soldiers to Yerevan

Move comes with mediation of Hungary, says Azerbaijani authority on war prisoners, hostages, missing persons.

BAKU, Azerbaijan (AA) – Azerbaijan handed over five Armenian soldiers to Yerevan, citing “principles of humanism,” a state authority announced on Wednesday.

The extradition of the Armenian detainees was carried out through Hungary’s mediation, said Azerbaijan’s State Commission on Prisoners of War, Hostages and Missing Persons.

The statement underlined that the extradited soldiers were detained on Nov. 16 while attempting a provocation in the Kalbajar border region.

Azerbaijan extradited 21 Armenian soldiers in the past two months.

Relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia have been tense since 1991, when the Armenian military occupied Nagorno-Karabakh, also known as Upper Karabakh, a territory internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, and seven adjacent regions.

Clashes erupted in September last year, and during the six-week war, Azerbaijan liberated several cities and nearly 300 settlements and villages.

The 44-day conflict ended in November 2020 in a Russia-brokered deal that saw Armenia cede swathes of territory it had occupied for nearly three decades.

In January, the leaders of the three countries agreed to develop economic ties and infrastructure for the benefit of the entire Caucasus region.


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