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Azerbaijan threatens Chernobyl-style ‘catastrophe’ in Caucasus drone war. #Forbes

Azerbaijan threatens Chernobyl-style ‘catastrophe’ in Caucasus drone war. #Forbes
Sunday, 19 July, 2020, 12:50

The conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan has erupted into open warfare again. As previously noted on Forbes, there has recently been an alarming build-up of drone air forces on both sides. Azerbaijan has now threatened to use its capability to hit Armenia's only atomic power plant.

At least 16 people have been reported killed in the fighting. Drones have again featured, with both claiming to have shot down enemy drones. Azerbaijan denies Armenian claims to have shot down no less than 13 of their unmanned aircraft. Armenian officials claim that Azerbaijani drones attacked civilian targets in the town of Berd. Fighting now appears to have paused but the situation is tense. In Azerbaijan, thousands of protesters took to the streets to support retaking Nagorno-Karabakh by military force.

The most alarming development is the threat of nuclear “catastrophe” made by Azerbaijani Defense Ministry spokesman Vagif Dargyakhly on Thursday. Dargyakhly stated that their weapons “are capable of hitting the Metzamur Atomic Energy Station with high accuracy, which will turn into a catastrophe for Armenia.”
“Statements of this kind are a crime," Armenian Defense Ministry spokesman Artsrun Ovannisyan told reporters.
The situation between Armenia and Azerbaijan remains tense. There is no sign yet of either side carrying out threats to strategic infrastructure, but the potential for a disaster that might spread far beyond the Caucasus has been made plain. The specter has been raised and it is not going to go away.