The cities of Stepanakert and Shushi came under heavy shelling last night. In the aftermath, an elderly woman and her two grandchildren were killed in Stepanakert.
Intense battles have been ongoing near the town of Shushi. Azerbaijani forces had been launching numerous attacks in small groups. This evening, Artsrun Hovhannisyan of the Defense Ministry said that Armenian forces had successfully pushed back the Azerbaijani offensive. “If May 8, 1992 was marked in Armenian history as the day Shushi was liberated, then these days will be marked as the brilliant days of the defense of Shushi,” he said.
Hovhannisyan did say that the fight is not over. The battles continue and there will still be hard days ahead, but Armenian forces “have come out of this situation with honor.”
Here is a chronology of official updates.
9 a.m.: Overnight, the cities of Stepanakert and Shushi were heavily shelled by Azerbaijani forces. In Shushi, several homes were set on fire; and there is destruction in Stepanakert. The State Service of Emergency Situations is on the scene. According to preliminary reports, there are three civilian casualties.
Statistics about numbers of civilians and young conscripts killed in conflict often water down the true magnitude of human loss. This is the story of one family’s struggle through the 2020 Artsakh War.Read more
10:45 a.m.: Artsakh Defense Ministry reported that military operations continued in all of the main directions of the front line overnight. Defense Army units fought defensive battles in the east, south and southwest, causing significant losses to Azerbaijani forces.
Armenian forces repelled the attempted attacks of Azerbaijani forces in the direction of Shushi. Throughout the day, the adversary continued targeting civilian settlements and infrastructure using artillery and missile systems. Casualties have been reported among the peaceful population.
Azerbaijani forces continue attacking in all of the directions of the front line. The operative-tactical situation remains under the control of the Defense Army.
12:06 p.m.: According to Artsakh’s State Service of Emergency Situations, Azerbaijani forces are shelling Stepanakert using cluster munitions. The adversary targeted residential buildings, civilian and public settlements. So far, no information about casualties.
1:18 p.m.: Defense Ministry spokesperson Shushan Stepanyan announced that, around 11:30 a.m., the air defense units of the Artsakh Defense Army shot down an Azerbaijani UAV in the southeastern direction.
5:50 p.m.: Artsrun Hovhannisyan of the Defense Ministry wrote that battles around Shushi are continuing.
6:30 p.m.: Artsakh Ombudsman Artak Beglaryan’s message following the shelling in Stepanakert that killed an elderly woman and her two grandchildren.
9:46 p.m.: Artak Beglaryan, Artsakh’s Ombudsman tweeted that Azerbaijan shelled the archaeological camp near the Tigranakert historical-cultural reserve. “This is one of the cases of targeting Armenian cultural heritage of Artsakh/Karabakh,” Beglaryan wrote.
9:50 p.m.: Artsrun Hovhannisyan of the Defense Ministry wrote on his Facebook Page: “Shushi is ours, the end.”
My new video message & introduction on the #Azerbaijan today’s strike on a house in #Stepanakert killing an elderly women & her 2 grandchildren.
Azerbaijan & #Turkey continue #WarCrimes & targeting civilian areas of #Artsakh/#Karabakh.#DontBeBlind pic.twitter.com/o2cj7MVCK2
— Artak Beglaryan (@Artak_Beglaryan) November 6, 2020
Defense Ministry Live Press Briefing
10 p.m.: During a live press briefing, Artsrun Hovhannisyan of the Defense Ministry said that, for two days now, intense battles have been taking place in the surrounding communities and areas of Shushi, as well as on the roads leading to the city. He noted that, if May 8, 1992 was marked in Armenian history as the day Shushi was liberated, then these days will be marked as the brilliant days of the defense of Shushi. Artsakh Defense Army units continue to neutralize mercenaries, terrorist groups and Azerbaijani subversive groups. Today, the artillerymen, infantry and other units of the Defense Army performed miracles. Following the actions of the Armenian forces, there are tens if not hundreds of bodies of Azerbaijani servicemen and mercenaries on and around the roads and gorges of Shushi. At the moment, the battles continue, but the intensity of operations has substantially decreased. During the day, the situation was less tense in other directions of the front line. Hovhannisyan noted that the residents of Karin Tak village also participated in neutralizing the forces of the adversary.
“Today was one of the days of the heroic defense of Shushi,” said Hovhannisyan. “Shushi is ours and it will not fall.” He urged everyone to believe that Armenian forces will fight till the end.
While answering reporters’ questions, Artsrun Hovhannisyan once again stressed that Turkey is backing Azerbaijan with all its might: with its reconnaissance, technical support and its military command. “We have actually established that there is no Azerbaijani command, there is the command of Turkey’s General Staff to Azerbaijani forces, units, troops, mercenaries and others,” Hovhannisyan said.
Hovhannisyan also said that the battles continue in Hadrut and nearby villages, and Azerbaijani forces have been trying to use primary roads to reach Shushi by all means, but they are being destroyed on their way in all directions. “Those gorges have become hell for them: We’ve shared footage today, and believe me there is also dreadful footage for Azerbaijani society which we will show later.”
Hovhannisyan also said that Azerbaijani armed units trying to capture Shushi are not subversive groups as such, they are elite forces who have been backed up by artillery forces, mercenaries, light and fast moving armored vehicles and are trained to carry out military operations at night with the same intensity as during the day. Hovhannisyan said that he can announce with certainty that even though the battles are ongoing, Azerbaijani artillery units working in Shushi have today received a devastating blow from Armenian forces.
Recognition of Artsakh by a Number of Municipalities
The City Council of Berga in Catalonia recognized the independence of Artsakh. The statement of the resolution says that, at the suggestion of the Armenian Cultural Union of Barcelona, they accept and recognize the independence of the Artsakh Republic, its right to self-determination and territorial sovereignty.
The resolution also condemns the military aggression of Azerbaijan against Artsakh, and notes that Azerbaijan has committed war crimes, used cluster munitions against the civilian population, shelled cities, monuments, churches, as well as executed prisoners of war.
The legislature of Paysandú, one of the largest states in Uruguay, unanimously, with 28 votes in favor, recognized the independence of Artsakh.
The city council of the Greek city of Didymoteicho has adopted a resolution expressing solidarity with the Armenian people, condemning the Azerbaijani-Turkish attacks and violence against Artsakh.
Armenia’s Ombudsman On the Azerbaijani Attack in Davit Bek and Agarak Villages of Armenia’s Syunik Region
The Human Rights Ombudsman of Armenia has released an ad hoc report on Azerbaijani military attacks against Davit Bek and Agarak villages of the Syunik region of Armenia.
Alarming calls from civilians of Davit Bek and Agarak villages addressed to the Human Rights Defender, interviews with local administrations and the fact-finding activities in villages confirmed that military attacks of Azerbaijani armed forces pose a real danger to civilians; gross violations of their rights to life; health; property and other rights were established.
As confirmed in the report, Azerbaijani military attacks damaged 38 residential houses, two barns, 20 cattle and five vehicles in Davit Bek village. Gravestones in the village cemetery were also destroyed.
One civilian was killed and two were wounded (one of them sustained serious injuries).
Shelling damaged residential houses and civilian infrastructure in Agarak village. Private cars and other property in the village were also destroyed. Two civilians have sustained injuries.
Read the full report here.