Finnish journalists visit Azerbaijani front line district

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Tartar, October 3, AZERTAC

Finnish Iltalehti magazine reporter Antero Eerola and photographer Jael Karppanen, who attended the 5th Baku International Humanitarian Forum, have visited Tartar district, Azerbaijan, to familiarize themselves with the situation on the frontline and living standards of civilians and refugees and displaced persons temporarily living there.

They first visited the District Executive Authority where they were informed about the challenges facing the civilians living on the frontline, and the problems caused as a result of Armenia's shelling the residential areas. Head of Tartar Executive Authority Mustagim Mammadov said that the district's territory was located 48 km from the frontline. "The Armenian armed units keep under constant fire the residential areas of the district which are close to the line of contact and prevent the civilian population from doing farm works."

Mammadov said that as a result of Armenia's ceasefire violation this April, 23 residential areas close to the line of contact, as well as 15-20 km from the contact line were subjected to heavy artillery fire. "The Armenians even used the prohibited white phosphorous bombs. As a result nearly 400 houses, 4 schools, 2 medical centers, and a kindergarten were damaged, 32 houses were completely destroyed. Nine civilians were injured, 3 people died 2 of whom were IDPs. 52 houses, where internally displaced persons lived, were destroyed, 198 persons were left homeless again. Power facilities, communication lines and an agricultural area of 1500 hectares have been seriously damaged in Shikharkh, Chayli and Hasangaya villages where the majority of population were IDPs.”

The journalists then visited a military unit and the houses which were destroyed by the Armenian shelling.

In Hasangaya village, they met with IDP families and enquired about their problems.

The Finnish media representatives also viewed the remains of Maragha 150 monument which was erected in Shikharkh settlement by the Armenians themselves on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the resettlement of Armenians to Nagorno-Karabakh.

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