TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Armenia has revealed photos of the wreckage of its SU-25 fighter jet which it claims was shot down by a Turkish F-16 amid accusations that Ankara is throwing its military might behind Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan today announced it had ‘neutralised’ 2,300 Armenian soldiers as fighting entered a fourth day in the worst eruption of violence between the two countries since a 1994 ceasefire over an Azerbaijani territory which is largely inhabited by Armenians, the Daily Mail reported.
Despite Azerbaijan and Turkey denying that an F-16 had downed Armenia’s SU-25, the defence ministry in Yerevan named its dead pilot as Major Valeri Danelin and published photos of the jet painted in the Armenian Air Force colours, smouldering on a mountainside.
Turkey has been stridently backing the Republic of Azerbaijan, raising fears that Russia – which has a military base in Armenia – could be drawn into a proxy war after Moscow and Anakara came close to trading blows in Syria last year.
French President Emmanuel Macron today slammed Turkey’s fighting talk as ‘reckless and dangerous’ after Ankara pledged its full support for Azerbaijan to reclaim the ethnically-Armenian Nagorno-Karabakh territory.
The Kremlin, which also wields influence over the former Soviet republic of Azerbaijan, has called on the hostilities to be ‘immediately ended’ and warned Turkey not to ‘add fuel to the flames.’
Azerbaijan said today it has killed or wounded at least 2,300 Armenian troops so far in the battle which started on Sunday.
The defence ministry, which has been tweeting numerous videos of its strikes, said it had destroyed 130 tanks and armoured vehicles, 200 artillery and missile systems and 50 anti-tank guns.