ארמן סמבטיאן
Armenia's envoy to Israel Armen Melkonian
Photo: Armenian Foreign Ministry
Armenia's envoy to Israel Armen Melkonian

Armenia recalls envoy to Israel over arms sales to Azerbaijan

Armenian foreign ministry spokeswoman says 'Israel's work style unacceptable' after Baku acknowledges using Israeli-made weapons in fighting with ethnic Armenian forces around Nagorno-Karabakh

Reuters |
Published: 10.01.20 , 22:26
Armenia said on Thursday it had recalled its ambassador to Israel for consultations over Israeli arms sales to Azerbaijan.
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  • Azerbaijan has acknowledged using Israeli-made weapons in its fighting with ethnic Armenian forces around Nagorno-Karabakh, where heavy clashes this week have drawn international calls for an immediate ceasefire.
    ארמן סמבטיאןארמן סמבטיאן
    Armenia's envoy to Israel Armen Melkonian
    (Photo: Armenian Foreign Ministry)
    Protesting against the Israeli weapons exports, Armenian foreign ministry spokeswoman Anna Naghdalyan said "Israel's work style is unacceptable. The ministry has to call back its ambassador in Israel."
    The Foreign Ministry said in response: "Israel regrets Armenia's decision to recall its ambassador. Israel sees great importance in its relations with Armenia and sees the Armenian Embassy in Israel as an important tool for promoting this relationship for the benefit of both peoples."
    Asked for details on weapons sales to Azerbaijan, an Israeli defense ministry spokeswoman declined to comment.
    An Israeli-made Azeri drone targeting Armenian positions
    (Photo: Azerbijan Defense Ministry)
    According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), a leading conflict and armaments think-tank, Israel provided Azerbaijan with some $825 million in weapons between 2006 and 2019.
    Those exports included drones, loitering munitions, anti-tank missiles, and a surface-to-air missile system, information from SIPRI's Arms Transfers Database showed.
    רקטה של צבא אזרבייג'ן תקיפה באזור נגורנו קרבאך רקטה של צבא אזרבייג'ן תקיפה באזור נגורנו קרבאך
    Azeri artillery in Nagorno-Karabakh
    (Photo: Reuters)
    Separately, in an interview with Israeli media on Wednesday, Azeri presidential aide Hikmat Hajayev said Azerbaijan was using "some" Israeli-made drones in fighting around Nagorno-Karabakh, without specifying how many.
    "(We) have one of the strongest (drone) fleets in the region. And among them we have Israeli ones, we have other drones as well, but Israeli drones especially, including reconnaissance and attack drones, and kamikaze 'Harop' drones, (which) have proved itself very effective," Hajayev said.
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