Azerbaijani mine clearing experts have so far defused 55,000 landmines and explosive ordnance in regions liberated from the Armenian army in November 2020.
Azerbaijan's mine disposal teams continued to clear areas of landmines and live explosive devices in the Karabakh and neighboring regions. It is estimated that the Armenian army has planted hundreds of thousands of mines in different regions.
The Azerbaijan Mine Clearance Agency (ANAMA) is conducting an operation using cutting-edge equipment to locate and defuse explosives that are endangering the lives of innocent people as well army deployed in Karabakh and neighboring territories.
The Ministry of Emergency Situations, Border Services Command and Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) special mine research squads have been collaborating with ANAMA to clear the areas of mines and explosives.
Since the end of the second Karabakh war on Nov. 10, 2020, mine clearance experts have combed over 23,000 hectares of terrain, detecting and defusing over 26,000 unexploded munitions and 29,000 mines.
Landmines explosions have claimed 37 lives, including seven civilians and 30 Azerbaijani soldiers, and injured 111 troops and 49 ordinary people.
In line with an agreement, Armenia earlier handed over maps of 92,000 mines in the regions of Fuzuli and Zengilan and 97,000 others in Agdam city.
The Armenian government then gave Azerbaijan maps of all mines in exchange for the latter agreeing to release some of the former's soldiers. The Azerbaijani side, however, claims that the maps are just 25% accurate.
Meanwhile, Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry announced that the Armenian forces subjected to fire the positions of the Azerbaijan army in the direction of Aghdam settlement of Tovuz region from the positions of the state border in Musurskend settlement of Tovuzgala region.
"The Azerbaijan Army Units took adequate retaliatory measures," the ministry said in a statement.
It underlined that there are no losses among the military personnel and equipment of the Azerbaijan army.
Relations between the former Soviet republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan have been tense since 1991 when the Armenian military occupied Nagorno-Karabakh, also known as Upper Karabakh, a territory internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, and seven adjacent regions.
As new clashes erupted in September 2020, a 44-day conflict saw Azerbaijan liberate several cities and over 300 settlements and villages that were occupied by Armenia for almost 30 years.
The fighting ended in November 2020 with a deal brokered by Russia that saw Armenia cede chunks of the territory it had occupied for decades.
In January 2021, Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russia agreed to develop economic ties and infrastructure for the benefit of the entire region.