Report on Azerbaijani and Turkish aggression of 27 September 2020 against Artsakh and Armenia
photo courtesy: Narek Aleksanyan
HRRC publishes the analysis of Ani Harutyunyan - Adv. LLM, MA, indepentend expert of international criminal law- regarding the situation of Azerbaijani and Turkish aggression of 27 September 2020 against Artsakh and Armenia.
All views expressed in the report are that of the author.
Contacts of the author: email@example.com
The current report is an analysis of the available information on the military offensive initiated by Azerbaijan with the support of Turkey on 27 September 2020 against Artsakh (also known as Nagorno-Karabakh) and Armenia. The armed hostilities continue at the time of the writing, despite the temporary humanitarian ceasefire agreement of 10 October. The report elaborates on the background of the conflict, international legal aspects of the self-determination and statehood of Artsakh, preparation and execution of the aggression against Artsakh and Armenia by Azerbaijan and Turkey. The facts and analysis in this report reflect the events that took place until 14 October 2020.
You can download and read the full report in pdf format (attached bellow) .
AZERBAIJAN AND TURKEY AGGRESSION AGAINST ARTSAKH AND ARMENIA (27 September 2020)*
*Prior to the discussion bellow, the author presents the background of the conflict, as well as international legal aspects of the self-determination and statehood of Artsakh. You will find that part of the analysis in the pdf file attached.
Prohibition of the use of force and aggression in international law
1. Since the 20th century war has been renounced as an instrument of national policy. The 1928 Briand-Kellogg Pact forms the basis of the peaceful settlement of disputes. Article 2(3) of the UN Charter requires states to settle international disputes exclusively by peaceful means, whether political or judicial, for as long as it is necessary. Use of force is impermissible. Even in case of not reaching an early solution, states shall refrain from any action which may impede the peaceful resolution.
2. Use of armed force by one state against another is prohibited under the UN Charter and customary international law and gives rise to international state responsibility. An exception is the inherent right of the state to self-defence in case of an unlawful use of force in the form of an armed attack.
3. As defined in the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 3314 (XXIX) of 14 December 1974, Aggression is the use of armed force by a State against the sovereignty, territorial integrity or political independence of another State, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Charter of the United Nations. The state in the definition is used without prejudice to questions of recognition or to whether a State is a member of the United Nations. The acts of aggression include but are not limited to the attack, bombardment, the use of any weapons by the armed forces of a state against the territory of another state, an attack by the armed forces of a state on the land, […] air forces of another State; the sending on behalf of a State of armed bands, groups, irregulars or mercenaries, which carry out acts of armed forces against another State of such gravity as to amount to the acts listed above, or its substantial involvement therein.
4. Aggression is an international crime and gives rise to individual criminal responsibility under customary international law of those individuals who plan, organize, prepare or participate in the first use of large-scale armed force by one state against another, for the purpose of subjugating the other state or with other aggressive aims.
War as a political tool of Azerbaijan and Turkey against ethnic Armenian existence in Artsakh
5. Azerbaijan views the conflict as a dispute between two countries, Armenia and Azerbaijan, over a territory, and that the only resolution is the transfer of that territory to Azerbaijan by any means, including military force, regardless the will of the people of Artsakh. Azerbaijan completely rejects the right of the people (ethnic Armenians) of Artsakh to self-determination, equating the Armenian presence in Artsakh to the presence of Armenian communities throughout the world. This is coupled with the anti-Armenian state policy by Azerbaijan and Turkey, the latter’s policy of Pan-Turkism and unconditional support to Azerbaijan’s actions.
6. In his interview to “Al Jazeera” on 3 October 2020 the president of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliev explained that since the territory of Artsakh is not given to Azerbaijan, the negotiations become ineffective and senseless. Therefore, Azerbaijan uses military force, as a “historical task” in order to establish the Azerbaijani control over the territory. As he states, “[t]hey need to leave our territory. And then the war will stop.” In another interview given to “Al-Arabiya” on 4 October president Aliev stated: “Karabakh is Azerbaijan. [PM of Armenia] should give Karabakh to those, who own it, to us… Otherwise we will do it by force. We will restore our territorial integrity by force”. He added: “I hear a lot about this, that there is no military solution to the conflict. Frist, I do not agree with that. If there is no military solution, give us not military solution. Give us diplomatic solution”. He also claims that by using force Azerbaijan is implementing the UN SC resolutions because they were not implemented through negotiations. Aliev made the same statements in his interview of 19 September to the Azerbaijani media.
7. While president Aliev claims that “[w]e don’t have a problem with Armenian people and consider them [Armenians living in Artsakh] our citizens,” the state policy and the actions and statements of the high-level officials, including president Aliev, evidence the opposite. Here are a few examples of state-coordinated hate and elimination policy against Armenians. (1) In 2005 the Azerbaijani military methodically destroyed thousands of UNESCO-protected Armenian cross-stones, the last evidence of the indigenous Armenian presence in Julfa, Nakhijevan, under Azerbaijani control. International observers were banned from entering the area, but large reports and evidence are available. (2) In 2004, an Azerbaijani serviceman, Ramil Safarov, murdered an Armenian serviceman with an axe while he was asleep in the course of the NATO training in Budapest. Safarov admitted he had committed the murder on account of his Armenian origin. He was convicted and later sent to Azerbaijan to serve his sentence. However, upon his arrival in 2012, Safarov received a presidential pardon and was released. He was promoted to the rank of major at a public ceremony, granted a flat and paid eight years of salary arrears. Thousands of people celebrated his release in the streets. The Azerbaijani authorities and public received the pardon as “triumph of justice”. (3) The school textbooks in Azerbaijan teach children Armenophobia since early age. Armenians in the textbooks are portrayed as “Armenian aggressors”, “black clouds”, “grey wind” that occupied, destroyed Azerbaijani culture and land, the Republic of Armenia is considered “Azerbaijani historical land”.
8. Thus, the 27 September offensive by Azerbaijan against Artsakh is aimed in defeating the self-determination of the people of Artsakh, cleansing the region from ethnic Armenian presence, by the means of military force, coupled with the full and unconditional support of Turkey that in turn continues officially denying the 1915 genocide against Armenians in Ottoman Empire.
Unjustified use of force by Azerbaijan
9. As was mentioned before, an exception to the prohibition of the use of force is the inherent right of the state to self-defence in case of an unlawful use of force in the form of an armed attack. Azerbaijan’s use of military force against Artsakh could only be justified if carried out as a response to the prior, ongoing or imminent armed attack coming from Artsakh.
10. As it was demonstrated in the previous chapter, Azerbaijan’s justification of the use of force was the ineffectiveness of the negotiations and the wish to solve the issue through military means by establishing a territorial control by Azerbaijan over Artsakh and rejecting the right to self-determination of the people of Artsakh.
11. There is no indication of any armed attack from the side of Artsakh or Armenia that would trigger the right of Azerbaijan to use force as a self-defence. As the president of France, Emanuel Macron also stated, “I want to be clear. The attacks of last Sunday on the part of Azerbaijan to my knowledge did not have any justifications.”
Attack, bombardment, use of weapons by Azerbaijan’s armed forces against the territory of Artsakh as acts of aggression
12. As noted above, Artsakh satisfies the criteria of statehood, despite its current de facto status. Besides, for the purposes of the prohibition of aggression against a state, “the state” is used without prejudice to questions of recognition or to whether a State is a member of the United Nations.
13. On 27 September Artsakh Defence Army announced that, in the morning, at about 07:15, Azerbaijan’s armed forces launched a large-scale armed attack, using artillery, military aviation, striking UAVs and armoured fighting vehicles along the whole line of contact between the Azerbaijan and Artsakh armed forces, targeting also the deep-seated civilian objects, including capital city Stepanakert. The attack on Stepanakert resulted in the deaths of at least two civilians: a girl and a woman. Then, the special forces, motor-rifle and armoured units of the Azerbaijani armed forces turned to the offensive in the northern, southern and south-eastern direction of Artsakh.
14. As of 18:00 of 27 September the Defence Army reported, it had hit 3 helicopters, around 20 UAVs, including striking ones, 30 tanks and infantry fighting vehicles (IFV) of Azerbaijani armed forces. On the Artsakh side, 16 military personnel were killed and hundreds wounded. The president of Artsakh, Arayik Harutyunyan, in his press conference of 27 September announced that Azerbaijan used all its military arsenal, including “Smerch”, “Kasirga”, “Polonez” multiple rocket launchers, artillery, armored vehicles, including the “TOS 1A” heavy artillery system. Already within four days of the commencement of the armed hostilities Artsakh army destroyed as much offensive military equipment of Azerbaijan as during the whole period of the 1990s war. As of 11 October, the Armenian side reported the following military losses of Azerbaijan: 165 UAVs, 16 helicopters, 17 aircrafts, 510 armoured vehicles, 4 TOS multiple rocket launchers, 4719 personnel.
Sending mercenaries by Azerbaijan as an act of aggression
15. According to available information, Azerbaijan sent and continues sending different armed groups, mercenaries recruited and transferred from Syria with support of Turkey, to fight against the armed forces of Artsakh. These persons are wearing uniforms of the Azerbaijani armed forces, armed with weapons and are substantially involved in the armed hostilities. Intercepted phone conversations and the reported numbers of the deaths indicate that they are participating in hostilities in the hotspots of the battlefield. They were recruited and deployed in advance, before the actual hostilities which also indicates Azerbaijan sent mercenaries and other armed groups on its behalf to start the offensive operation against Artsakh.
Acts of aggression against Armenia
16. On 29 September, the Azerbaijani Ministry of Defence spread information that Armenia was attacking Dashkesan region of Azerbaijan from the eastern, Vardenis region of Armenia. Armenia officially rejected these claims stating that Azerbaijan was aiming to prepare grounds to widen the territory of the armed hostilities and commit aggression against the Republic of Armenia. About one hour later, Azerbaijani armed forces directed attacks against the military units, used air force against the Armenian military positions in Vardenis of Armenia, and used a UAV targeting and burning down a civilian bus.
17. The Ministry of Defence of Armenia reported that on 29 September, from 10:30 an F-16 fighter aircraft belonging to the air forces of Turkey took off from “Gyanja” airport of Azerbaijan and were ensuring the attacks from Azerbaijani “Dalyar” airport on the civilian objects and armed forces of Vardenis, Mets Masrik, Sotk regions of the Republic of Armenia. These attacks were carried out with SU-25 aircraft and “Bayraktar” UAV of Turkish production. According to the flight data recorder, the Turkish F-16 multifunctional fighter, was located at a depth of 60 km, at an altitude of 8200 meters.
18. On 1 October, the Ministry of Defence of Armenia reported that the Azerbaijani armed forces shelled the Vardenis-Sotk highway of Armenia. Hours later Azerbaijan was reported to have directed artillery attacks against Shatvan, UAV attacks on Mets Masrik villages of Gegharkunik region of Armenia, as a result of which one civilian was killed and two other civilians were injured.
19. From 1 to 2 October, at night Azerbaijani 4 intelligence UAVs were destroyed by the Armenian armed forces in the air territory of Armenia, in Kotayk, Gegharkunik regions.
20. On 2 October, at around 15:30, the Armenian MoD rejected Azerbaijani official statements, that the “Tochka-U” tactical missile complex was used from the territory of Armenia to target Azerbaijani territory. The Armenian MoD noted that although Armenia’s territory, Vardenis region, had been targeted with UAVs and artillery of various calibres for several days, no rocket was fired yet in the direction of Azerbaijan from the territory of the Republic of Armenia.
21. On 4 October the Armenian MoD officially further denied Azerbaijani any claims that its territory was being attacked from the territory of Armenia, especially in the direction of Mingechaur, and later reported that it targeted Azerbaijani intelligence UAVs in Vardenis region of Armenia on 7 October and 8 October. On 10 October before the agreed time of the humanitarian ceasefire, Azerbaijan employed striking UAVs in Syunik region of Armenia.
JOINT PREPARATION AND EXECUTION BY AZERBAIJAN AND TURKEY OF AGGRESSION AGAINST ARTSAKH AND ARMENIA
Joint preparations by Azerbaijan and Turkey at information/ propaganda level
22. On 27 September the State Border Service of Azerbaijan published on its “YouTube” channel a music video about “Karabakh” singing the land is calling the Azerbaijani people to go and liberate it. As we can read in the description under the clip, the archives of Ministry of Defence and State Border Service of Azerbaijan were used in the preparation of the video. It is apparent that the music video could not be shot the same day of the commencement of the armed hostilities. The song is performed in an open field with no enemies in sight, next to the fleet of missiles launchers and tanks.
23. Azerbaijan restricted international reporters to report on the situation on the ground. Turkish journalists were allowed to work and report the pre-planned scenario of the events. Turkish journalists were deployed in Azerbaijan already before the burst of armed hostilities and were rapidly reporting from the frontline minutes after the official announcement of the escalation on 27 September. Azerbaijan has also restricted social media and communications platforms since the beginning of the hostilities.
24. From the beginning on 27 September and throughout the period of the armed hostilities all Turkish media articles without exception called “Invader Armenia”. On 21 September Euronews Turkey published an article with the headline “A message from Turkey to Armenia – You’ve attacked Azerbaijan, stop playing with fire” by referring to the Ministry of National Defence of Turkey and mentioning an alleged death of an Azerbaijani soldier near Armenian-Azerbaijani border. On 23 September the head of Turkey’s Great Unity Party Mustafa Destiji announced that they are taking the alleged murder of an Azerbaijani soldier as a threat to Turkey and to the Turkish nation.
25. Already in August the Turkish newspapers also blamed Armenia for, as they state “having claims towards Azerbaijani Tovuz region and Georgian Akhalkalaki region.” Other such groundless information was also actively published proceeding the armed hostilities, such as Kurdish mercenaries fighting on the Armenian side against Azerbaijan or Armenian mercenaries being sent to Syria to fight against Turkey, or Artsakh authorities preparing the population for evacuation, and on secret negotiations on behalf of the Armenian Prime Minister to give Azerbaijan Armenian territories in exchange for peace. This indicates the willingness of the Azerbaijani and Turkish authorities to predispose the international community’s attitude against the Armenians, to justify their own acts of recruitment and use of Syrian mercenaries, as well as to spread panic among the local Armenian population in Artsakh. Turkey had used the same excuse of neutralizing terrorist upon its invasion of Northern Iraq.
Turkey’s complete and unconditional support to Azerbaijan at high-political level
26. Turkey has been providing complete and unconditional support to Azerbaijan also at high-political level both before and throughout the whole period of the armed hostilities.
27. On 22 September Turkish newspaper “Cumhuriyet” published an article “A warning from Chavushoghlu to Armenia” where Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Chavushoghlu said Armenia had better gather its wits, adding that they are always by brotherly Azerbaijan’s side in their just cause. The speaker of Turkey’s ruling AK Party Chelik added that there is no need to analyse too much, Turkey unconditionally stands next to brotherly Azerbaijan and they are once again sending their warnings to Armenia not to play with fire.
28. Turkey’s president Erdogan reaffirmed on 27 September that “the Turkish nation continues to stand by its Azerbaijani brothers and sisters with all its means, as it has always done”. Additionally, in July Turkey’s defence minister “vowed to avenge” the Azerbaijani soldiers killed in clashes with Armenia.
Turkey’s support to Azerbaijani aggression as a political tool in resolution of the conflict
29. Turkey has the same official position concerning the peace process as Azerbaijan, considering the negotiations ineffective, thus, justifying the use of force with the purpose of obtaining territories and without the presence of the Armenian population in Artsakh.
30. Turkish ambassador to Canada in an interview to the Canadian “CBC” reaffirmed Turkey’s resort to the use of force on the Azerbaijani side as an alternative to the peaceful negotiations. As he put it, the OSCE Minsk Group “have been negotiating for 30 years. […] We are not in favour of using force to solve issues. […] We would love a peaceful resolution but it’s not there and, everything, every avenue has been tried and it’s not working”.
31. President Erdogan, leaders of Turkey’s “Justice and Development party” and nationalist party “Nationalist movement” explicitly call for war. Erdogan expressed his hopes that Azerbaijan would not stop until it “liberated its territories”.
Turkey’s military involvement in the aggression
32. According “Razminfo” referring to the Turkey’s Export Council report, Turkey’s defence and aviation export to Azerbaijan rapidly increased starting from August 2020. While the defence and aviation export in July constituted $278 thousand, in August it increased to $36 million, and in September $77 million 167 thousand.
33. Turkey’s involvement in the armed conflict was also recognized by the European Court of Human Rights which in its decision on the interim measures called on “all States directly or indirectly involved in the conflict, including Turkey, to refrain from actions, that contribute to breaches of the Convention rights of civilians, and to respect their obligations under the Convention”.
Turkey placing its armed forces and military equipment in Azerbaijan
34. In July – September Turkish-Azerbaijani large-scale joint military exercises of air and ground forces took place in different areas of Azerbaijan, including Nakhijevan region (between Armenia’s and Turkey’s borders). Air combat drills, involving jets and helicopters, continued in Baku, Nakhchivan, Ganja, Kurdamir, and Yevlakh, while ground operations were held in Baku and Nakhijevan. After the official closure the Turkish military, including advisers and equipment, remained in the territory of Azerbaijan preparing for the upcoming armed hostilities of 27 September. Turkish land and air forces were confirmed to be used against Artsakh and Armenia.
35. On 19 September Turkish newspaper “Akşam”, citing President of Azerbaijan, mentioned that Armenia had better think whether the joint Turkey-Azerbaijan military drills are a coincidence or not, underlining that the distance between Azerbaijani-Armenian border in Nakhichevan and Yerevan is only 80km. In the same interview Aliyev spoke about alleged Armenian claims towards Turkey, stating that any sensible politician or historian isn’t going to stand it, because this is going to be their end.
36. Presence of Turley’s military personnel: On 4 October Hikmet Hajiyev, Assistant to the president of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliev twitted photos from the city Gyanja, a permanent location of the Azerbaijani military facilities, from where military attacks are carried out against Artsakh and Armenia. In his post he blamed Armenians for “missile attacks” and “killing civilians” but deleted the post shortly after. The photos clearly demonstrated the military personnel of the Turkish armed forces wearing Turkish military uniform with the Turkish army emblem. The same is seen in the background of the photo taken during the report of the “Al Jazeera” in Azerbaijan.
37. Turkish F-16: on 27 September the president of Artsakh Arayik Harutyunyan announced at the press conference that Turkish F-16, registered in the balance of Turkish air forces, were not only used in the course of the hostilities but they had conducted intelligence flights for months before that. Satellite images suggest that there are at least two F-16 fighter jets in Gyanja airport of Azerbaijan together with a Turkish cargo aircraft. President Aliev admitted in the interview to the “CNN” the presence of the F-16s since the Azerbaijani-Turkish joint summer military drills, but he denied their use. The Artsakh MoD further reported the use of F-16s by Azerbaijan in different directions against Artsakh. On 29 September Armenia’s MoD reported that an Armenian Su-25 aircraft was targeted and downed by the F-16 in the direction of the territory of Armenia.
38. Turkish UAVs, including TB2 “Bayraktar”: Already on 27 September the president of Artsakh Arayik Harutyunyan mentioned the use of Turkish UAV “Bayraktar” and their control by Turkish armed forces against Artsakh. These drones are used to target civilians and civilian objects in Artsakh and Armenia. Thus, Canada suspended the export to Turkey of its technologies that are used in production of “Bayraktar” UAVs. Azerbaijan’s president Aliev admitted their use of Turkish UAVs in his interview to the Turkish TRT Haber TV: “due to the Turkish UAVs we avoided a lot of losses. Those UAVs demonstrate Turkey’s potential and strengthen us more… We are a very happy country to have a brother like Turkey”.
Turkey’s command and control of Azerbaijani armed forces
39. In addition to the presence of Turkish military personnel and equipment in the territory of Azerbaijan and their use against Artsakh and Armenia, Turkey’s armed forces have been reported to be carrying out the command and control of the Azerbaijani armed forces and the operation and direction of the F-16 aircrafts and “Bayraktar” UAVs.
40. The Armenian MoD announced on 30 September that the air command of offensive operations of Azerbaijan against Artsakh was handed over to the Turkish air forces. A video was released demonstrating two F-16 fighter jets of the Turkish Air Forces flying from Kurdamir, SU-25 aircrafts of the Azerbaijani Air Force, the “Bayraktar” drones carrying out bombing and missile attacks at high altitudes in the direction of Hadrut and Martuni regions of Artsakh. The Armenian MoD added that the air force operated under the remote command and control of the Turkish E7-T airborne C2 station from Erzurum – Kars area of Turkey, the command and leadership of the Turkish Air Forces possibly being on the board. The Turkish UAV C2 station was reported to be located at a distance from the border with Hadrut region, which directly controls the fire of Azerbaijani attack planes. The above-mentioned information is being directly monitored and observed by the C2 of the joint air defence and aviation command.
Turkey’s recruitment and transfer of mercenaries to Azerbaijan
41. Turkey has been involved directly in the recruitment and transfer of the mercenaries from the territories under its control of the Northern Syria both in the course and before the armed hostilities as part of the joint advance preparations with Azerbaijan. Already on 13 September some militants were summoned by the Turkish military in Afrin, and signed contracts on 18 September. There have been reports and affirmations by the fighters themselves that the Turkish military had opened recruitment sites in Afrin, Azaz, Jarablus, alBab, Mareh, alRaii for the purposes of their transfer to Azerbaijan. There have also been calls in mosques across areas occupied by Turkey to fight “Crusaders and the enemies of Muslims”. The transfer of the mercenaries, as well as that of their corpses is carried out through the territory of Turkey. As the president of France E. Macron stated on 1 October, “we have information that indicates with certainty that Syrian fighters from jihadist groups have transited through Gaziantep [a city in Turkey] to reach the theatre of operations in Nagorno-Karabakh”.
 Nuremberg IMT, Judgment and Sentences, reprinted in (1947) 41 American Journal of International Law 172, p. 218.  Article II, The General Treaty for the Renunciation of War, 27 August 1928.  Article 2(3), UN Charter; see also: 1970 Declaration on Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relationsand Co-operation among States in Accordance with the Charter of the United Nations; 1982 Manila Declaration on the Peaceful Settlement of International Disputes.  Article 2(4) UN Charter; ICJ, Nicaragua case. (Merits), Judgment, 1986, ICJ Reports 14, para 176, p. 94.  Nicaragua case (Merits), para 175; Article 51, UN Charter.  Article 1, Annex, United Nations General Assembly Resolution 3314 (XXIX), 14 December 1974.  Ibid, Article 1(a).  Ibid, Article 3(a), Article 3(b).  Ibid, Article 3(d).  Ibid, Article 3(g); Nicaragua case (Merits), para. 195.  Ibid, Article 5(2); R. v. Jones et al., House of Lords, 29 March 2006, UK; Y. Dinstein, War, Aggression and Self-Defence (5th edn) 2011, p. 128; G. Werle, F. Jessberger, Principles of International Criminal Law (3rd edn) 2014, pp. 538-539.  Al Jazeera, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliev’s Interview, 17:30 minute, 3 October 2020.  Al Jazeera, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliev’s Interview, 16:50 minute, 3 October 2020.  Ibid, 08:56 minute.  Al Arabya, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliev’s Interview, 10:35 minute, 4 October 2020.  See more on the clarification on the UN SC Resolutions in the chapter above.  Comply with the UN SC resolutions. […] during these 28 years [of negotiations] have there been diplomatic solutions? […] No! […] How long Armenians will continue to sit on our land…? […] If international community cannot provide implementation of international resolutions, Azerbaijan will do it itself. That’s what’s happening.”, Al Arabya, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliev’s Interview, 21:39 minute, 4 October 2020.  Trend.az, Президент Ильхам Алиев: Если Армения игнорирует международное право, то почему мы должны его соблюдать?!, 20 September 2020; Turan, О месседжах в последнем выступлении Ильхама Алиева, 21 September 2020.  Al Jazeera, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliev’s Interview, 12:38 minute, 3 October 2020.  More on the destruction of Armenian cultural heritage, A Regime Conceals Its Erasure of Indigenous Armenian Culture, 18 February 2019; more on the destruction of the cross-stones in Julfa, Nakhijevan, The Guardian, Monumental loss: Azerbaijan and 'the worst cultural genocide of the 21st century', 1 March 2019;  More details, ECtHR, Makuchyan and Minasyan v. Azerbaijan and Hugary, Judgment (Application no. 17247/13) 26 May 2020.  e.g., 9th grade textbook; 2nd grade textbook.  e.g. 3rd grade textbook.  Nicaragua case (Merits), para 175; Article 51, UN Charter.  Élysée – Présidence de la République française, Emmanuel Macron Interview, Video, 02:22, 1 October, 2020.  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Armenian Unified Infocenter, Facebook, 11 October 2020.  Middle East Monitor, ‘We were deceived’, says Syria mercenary fighting in Azerbaijan, 1 October 2020.  see more on mercenaries in the chapter bellow.  1in.am, Եվս մեկ գաղտնազերծված ձայնագրություն սիրիացի վարձկաններ, 12 October 2020.  Caucasian Knot, Armenian MoD reports about shelling attacks on Vardenis 29 September 2020; Artsrun Hovhannisyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, Photos, 29 September 2020.  Artsrun Hovhannisyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 29 September 2020; Artsrun Hovhannisyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, Video, 29 September 2020.  Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 18:46hh, 1 October 2020.  Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 22:42hh, 1 October 2020.  Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 2 October 2020.  Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 2 October 2020.  Davit Tonoyan, Minister of Defence of Armenia, Interview, 4 October 2020.  Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 4 October 2020.  Artsrun Hovhannisyan, Armenia MoD, Press Conference, Video, 20 minute, 7 October 2020.  Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 8 October 2020.  Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 10 October 2020; Map, Syunik region.  DÖVLƏT SƏRHƏD XİDMƏTİ, “Atəş” klipi. İfa edirlər: Nur qrupu, Nərmin Kərimbəyova, Ceyhun Zeynalov (Cin), Video, 27 September 2020.  Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 09:59hh, 27 September 2020.  NetBlocks, MappingNetFreedom, 27 September 2020.  Euronews Turkey, Türkiye'den Ermenistan'a mesaj: “Azerbaycan'a saldırdın, ateşle oynamayı kes”, 21 September 2020.  Milliyet, Mustafa Destici'den GSM operatörlerine çağrı, 23 September 2020.  Cumhuriyet, Rusya, Ermenistan'ı silahlandırıyor, 19 August 2020; Cumhuriyet, Aliyev: Ermenistan'a silahlar ücretsiz veriliyor, 25 September 2020.  The Jerusalem Post, Is Turkey planning to recruit Syrians to fight Armenia?, 26 September 2020.  Cumhuriyet, Çavuşoğlu'ndan Ermenistan'a uyar, 22 September 2020.  Milliyet, Son dakika: AK Parti Sözcüsü Çelik: Biz müzakere, diplomasi devletiyi, 22 September 2020.  President of Turkey, “The Turkish nation stands by its Azerbaijani brothers and sisters with all its means”, 27 September 2020.  The Jerusalem Post, Is Turkey planning to recruit Syrians to fight Armenia?, 26 September 2020.  CBC News, Interview with Turkish ambassador to Canada, Facebook, Video, 8 October 2020.  Civilnet, referring to Garo Paylan, an ethnic Armenian parliamentary in Turkey, Թուրքիայի իշխանությունը բացահայտ պատերազմի քարոզչություն է անում. Կարո Փայլան, 3 October 2020.  Lenta.ru, Эрдоган поддержал наступление армии Азербайджана в Карабахе, 2 October 2020.  Razminfo, Սեպտեմբերին Թուրքիան Ադրբեջանին 77 մլն դոլարի ռազմարդյունաբերական արտադրանք է վաճառել. զեկույց, 12 October 2020.  ECtHR, Decision on Interim Measures, Armenia v. Turkey, (Application 43517/20) 6 October 2020.  Anadolu, Turkey, Azerbaijan preparing for joint military drill, 28 July 2020.  e.g. a photo of a Turkish shell in Kut village of Vardenis of Armenia, Artsrun Hovhannisyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 3 October 2020.  Akşam, Azerbaycan Cumhurbaşkanı Aliyev'den ortak tatbikat açıklaması: Eriven yönetimini korkutuyor!, 19 September 2020.  Razminfo, Facebook, Photos, 4 October 2020.  Razminfo, Facebook, Photos, 4 October 2020.  President of Artsakh, Arayik Harutyunyan, Press Conference, Video, 09:30 minute, 27 September 2020.  Christoph Koettle, Twitter, 7 October 2020; Christiaan Triebert, Twitter, 7 October 2020; Hetq, New York Times Reporter Uncovers Evidence of Turkish F-16s in Ganja, 9 October 2020.  CNN, رئيس أذربيجان: مقاتلات F-16 التركية لا تشارك في المعارك ضد أرمينيا, Video, 8 October 2020.  Artsakh Defence Army, Facebook, 30 September 2020; Artsrun Hovhannisyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 29 September, 17:59.  President of Artsakh, Arayik Harutyunyan, Press Conference, Video, 05:56 minute, 27 September 2020, Arayik Harutytunyan, 27 September 2020; more on the Turkish air force, Forbes, Tanks Ablaze As Azerbaijani Forces Attack Armenian Troops In Disputed Nagorno-Karabakh, 27 September 2020; Manu Gomez, Twitter, 27 September 2020.  Government of Canada, Statement from Minister Champagne on suspension of export permits to Turkey, 5 October 2020; Razminfo, Կանադան դադարեցնում է Թուրքիային ԱԹՍ-ների տեխնոլոգիաների մատակարարումը, 6 October 2020.  TRT HABER, Azerbaycan Cumhurbaşkanı Aliyev TRT Haber’e konuştu, 5 October 2020 (translated – author); see more: Mediamax, Turkish Bayraktars striking Artsakh are Erdogan’s family business, 30 September 2020.  President of Artsakh, Arayik Harutyunyan, Press Conference, Video, 06:10 minute, 27 September 2020.  Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, 30 September 2020; Shushan Stepanyan, Armenia MoD, Facebook, Video, 30 September 2020.  The Jerusalem Post, Is Turkey planning to recruit Syrians to fight Armenia?, 26 September 2020.  The Guardian, Syrian rebel fighters prepare to deploy to Azerbaijan in sign of Turkey’s ambition: Volunteers in Syria’s last rebel stronghold claim Turkish firm signing up fighters, 28 September, 2020.  The Guardian, Syrian recruit describes role of foreign fighters in Nagorno-Karabakh, 2 October 2020.  EurAsia Daily, Afrin Post: Турция открыла в Сирии два пункта набора боевиков в Азербайджан, 28 September 2020.  Human Rights Organisation -Afrin -Syria, Facebook, 28 September 2020; EurAsia Daily, Боевик «Ахрар аль-Шам»: «Не хочу в Азербайджан, но мне нужны деньги», 29 September 2020.  Human Rights Organisation -Afrin -Syria, Facebook, 28 September 2020.  The Guardian, Syrian recruit describes role of foreign fighters in Nagorno-Karabakh, 2 October 2020 – Already on 22 September “Hamza Division”, consisting of Arab and Turkman militants, under the Turkish control were deployed to Azerbaijan. Turkish-backed Syrian National Army (SNA) in Afrin and SNA-affiliated Jaish al-Nukhba militia were supposed to be deployed on 25 September. Turkish-backed Sultan Murad, Suleiman Shah and Al Hamza divisions which left the Hawar Kilis border crossing with Turkey for a military base in Gaziantep on 23 September. The next day they flew to Istanbul and then on to Azerbaijan via Turkish military cargo planes. Data from the Flight Radar website, which tracks aircraft movements, as well as geo-located pictures and coordinates confirm this account.  Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), Nagorno-Karabakh battles: 107 Syrian mercenaries killed so far, and Turkey prepares new batch to send to Azerbaijan, 9 October 2020.  RFI, France's Macron says Syrian jihadists active in Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict, 1 October 2020.