Vancouver Sun

LEADER FEARS BROADER WAR WITH AZERBAIJAN

- The Associated Press

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.”

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