Yerevan: Azerbaijani forces on Monday killed an ethnic Armenian soldier in an alleged cross-border raid into Nagorny Karabakh, officials from the Armenian-backed breakaway region said.
Defence forces soldier Armen Hovhannisyan died from gunshot wounds after a clash with an "Azerbaijani subversive intelligence party" trying to cross into the territory early Monday, a statement from the region`s defence ministry said.
"After promptly locating the enemy`s offensive actions Karabakh forces undertook organised defensive manoeuvres and succeeded in pushing the enemy back and inflicting human and material loses," the statement said.
Armenia-backed separatists seized Nagorny Karabakh from Azerbaijan in a 1990s war that killed 30,000 people. Despite years of negotiations since a 1994 ceasefire, the two sides have still not signed a peace deal.
Azerbaijan has threatened to take back the disputed region by force if negotiations do not yield results, while Armenia has vowed to retaliate against any military action.
Around 20 soldiers from both the Armenian and Azerbaijani sides were reportedly killed last year.