On Thursday, the US, France, and Russia denounced the fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh. The three countries jointly called for an immediate ceasefire and pressed for peace talks.
Clashes continued in the disputed mountain enclave for a fifth day on Thursday, where over 100 have been reported killed. The US, Russia, and France co-chair the Minsk Group, which was set up in 1992 by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe to promote negotiations and peace talks over the Nagorno-Karabakh dispute.
Turkey rebuked the statement from the three powers. “Given that the USA, Russia and France have neglected this problem for nearly 30 years, it is unacceptable that they are involved in a search for a ceasefire,” Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said.
Turkey has thrown its support behind Azerbaijan in the conflict and has been accused of intervening militarily. Armenia said Ankara shot down one of its fighter jets with an F-16, but Turkey denies the accusation.
There have also been reports of Turkey sending fighters from northern Syria to the conflict zone in Nagorno-Karabakh. On Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron said that he had information that indicates “Syrian fighters from jihadist groups” have traveled through Turkey to reach “the Nagorno-Karabakh theatre of operations.”
Nagorno-Karabakh is a mountain enclave inhabited and administrated by ethnic Armenians within Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized borders. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the border dispute turned into heavy fighting, and thousands were killed until a ceasefire was agreed to in 1994. The latest round of fighting is the heaviest the enclave has seen since the ceasefire was declared.