Azerbaijan says Armenian armed groups used radio interference against civil aviation

Azerbaijan says Armenian armed groups used radio interference against civil aviation

‘Illegal Armenian armed detachments’ conduct ‘another provocation to threaten safety of flights passing through Azerbaijani airspace,’ says Defense Ministry

By Burc Eruygur

ISTANBUL (AA) – Azerbaijan on Monday said that Armenian armed groups in the country’s Karabakh region used radio-frequency interference against civil aviation traveling over the region.

“Illegal Armenian armed detachments in the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan, where the Russian peacekeeping forces are temporarily stationed, have intensified the use of radio-frequency interference to GPS satellite navigation systems of passenger aircraft of local and foreign airlines flying through the airspace of Azerbaijan,” said a statement by the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry.

It said that a failure occurred in the GPS system of an ATR-45 type passenger aircraft belonging to Azerbaijan Airlines, which was flying on the Fuzuli-Baku route, between 10.15 a.m. and 10.23 a.m. (0615GMT and 0623GMT).

While the command of the Russian peacekeeping contingent in the Karabakh region was informed of the situation, no actions were taken thus far, and that another provocation was made to threaten the safety of flights passing through Azerbaijani airspace, it added.

“It should be noted that radio-interference that poses a threat to the safety of civil aviation is unacceptable and contradicts the rules set by the International Civil Aviation Organization,” the statement concluded.

In separate statements, the Defense Ministry also said Armenian forces intermittently fired on Azerbaijani military positions in the districts of Gadabay, Lachin and Kalbajar. It added that Armenian armed groups tried to install long-term fortifications in the direction of the Khojali district.

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

In the fall of 2020, Azerbaijan liberated several cities, villages, and settlements from Armenian occupation during 44 days of clashes. The war ended with a Russia-brokered peace agreement.

Despite ongoing talks over a long-term peace agreement, tensions between the neighboring countries rose in recent months over the Lachin road, the only land route giving Armenia access to the Karabakh region, where Azerbaijan established a border checkpoint in April on the grounds of preventing the illegal transport of military arms and equipment to the region.​​​​​​​

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