Politics 12:47 01/10/2020 Region

At least three Syrian fighters killed in Nagorno-Karabakh – The Guardian

At least three Syrian opposition fighters have been killed in skirmishes in Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh), The Guardian has learned.

As fierce combat between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces stretched into a fourth day, the presence of Syrians on the ground – believed to be contractors working for Turkish security companies – signalled a new frontier for Ankara’s increasingly assertive foreign policy.

Several men in Syria’s last opposition stronghold of Idlib province told the Guardian this week that military commanders and brokers had offered them work guarding observation posts and oil and gas facilities in Azerbaijan on three or six month contracts at 7,000-10,000 Turkish lira (£700-£1,000) a month – relatively large sums of money which could help them escape Syria’s grinding poverty.

Omar Abdo, the cousin of killed fighter Muhammed Shaalan, from the town of al Atarib, said that men in Shaalan’s unit in the al Hamza division had contacted the family on Tuesday to inform them of Shaalan’s death.

“He told us he was leaving for Azerbaijan on 20 September. We don’t know the circumstances of his death and we were told it’s hard to bring his corpse at the moment, but they will try,” he said.

The families of Hussein Talha, from Ain Jara village, and Sadam Aziz Azkor of al Kareem, also said unit commanders had called them on Tuesday to say that their relatives had been killed. Local media has reported another three dead.

The quick mobilisation of Syrians to the front lines, as well as the fact that Syrian volunteers said the recruitment drive began a month ago, suggested Azerbaijan had been planning its military campaign for some time, the source added.



Source Panorama.am
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