With eyes on Gaza, Azerbaijan seizes Sev Lake from Armenia

Sev lake

With the world’s eyes focussed on the conflict between Gaza and Israel, Azerbaijan took the opportunity to invade 3.5 kilometres deep into the Republic of Armenia and snatch the entirety of Sev Lake.

Sev Lake, a glacial lake at an elevation of 2.678m (8,786ft) above the sea level, is divided between Armenia (with a 70% share) and Azerbaijan (with the remainder).

The Deputy Mayor of Goris Municipality in Armenia’s southern Syunik province, Menua Hovsepyan said:

“Yesterday Turkish (Azerbaijani) officers arrived at the pastures of Ishkhanasar and said that according to their GPS the lake near the village belongs to Azerbaijan.”

The Armenian Ministry of Defence confirmed that the Azerbaijani military advanced in Syunik province “Early in the morning of May 12.”

“The Azerbaijani Armed Forces, tried to ‘adjust the border’ by carrying out certain work in one of the border regions of Syunik,” they said, adding: “negotiations are underway to resolve the situation.”

According to the Vice-Mayor of Goris, Irina Yolyan, “hundreds of Azerbaijani soldiers advanced three kilometers towards the village of Verishen.”

“The Armenian side did not have defense, there was no one there with whom the enemy should have had a skirmish,” Irina continued.

“The situation is extremely dangerous, as 9 communities in the region use Sev Lake for irrigation,” the Vice-Mayor stressed.

Negotiations involving Russian peacekeepers, commanders from the Armenian Army first corps and the Azerbaijani military were held to get the Azeris return to their original positions, but without any success so far.

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan confirmed that Azerbaijan seized Sev Lake, but that there were no skirmishes between Armenian and Azerbaijan forces.

He described the situation as critical and said they are trying to resolve the issue through peaceful negotiations.

The seizure of Sev Lake comes as Azerbaijan’s Defence Ministry announced major military exercises schedule on May 16-20.

The exercises will have the participation of 15,000 servicemen, several hundred units of military equipment, including armored vehicles, artillery and 50 units of aviation equipment.

It is reminded that on March 11, Greek City Times questioned whether Azerbaijan was preparing for a military conflict with Armenia to invade Syunik Province.

READ MORE: Is Azerbaijan preparing for a new war against Armenia? 

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