LEADER FEARS BROADER WAR WITH AZERBAIJAN
YEREVAN Fighting raged Monday around Nagorno-Karabakh, with Azerbaijan saying it lost three of its troops in the separatist region while inflicting heavy casualties on Armenian forces and the Armenian president warning that the hostilities could slide into a full-scale war.
The Azerbaijani Defence Ministry said Armenian forces continued shelling Azerbaijani military positions and front-line villages despite a ceasefire that Azerbaijan unilaterally declared Sunday.
The outbreak of hostilities that erupted Saturday is the worst since a war that ended in 1994, leaving Nagorno-Karabakh under the control of local ethnic Armenian forces and the Armenian military. Armenian forces also occupy several areas outside Karabakh proper.
Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan warned Monday that his country could formalize its ties with Karabakh by officially recognizing its independence if the fighting escalates.
He warned that the escalation of hostilities could lead to a “large-scale war.”