Artsakh Dismisses Azerbaijani Reports of Captured Armenian Soldier

STEPANAKERT, Artsakh (A.W.)—On June 21, the Artsakh Defense Ministry dismissed the news of a captured Armenian serviceman that was reported by the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry.

The Azerbaijani Defense Ministry published a video of what they claimed to be an Armenian soldier who was captured following an attack on Azerbaijani positions (Photo: Azerbaijani Defense Ministry)

Earlier in the day, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry published a video of what they claimed to be an Armenian soldier who was captured following an attack on Azerbaijani positions. Azerbaijani media were quick to share and spread the news.

The video shows an interrogation of a disheveled man, speaking broken Armenian. The man in the video claimed that his name was Zaven Karapetyan, born on Nov. 16, 1974, in the village of Dovegh in Armenia’s Noyemberyan district. He added that he currently resides in Dovegh.

The man in the video also “confessed” that he was a serviceman, who allegedly participated in the diversionary attack the day before.

“The Defense Ministry of the Artsakh Republic announces that the defense army did not participate in any said actions,” read part of the Defense Ministry’s statement. “By disseminating such information, the Azerbaijani forces attempt to create the allusion of another ‘victory’ in their alternate reality,” it continued.

According to Armenian news outlets, Armenian Army spokesperson Artsrun Hovhannisyan also refuted the Azerbaijani claim and said that it was just a part of typical false Azerbaijani propaganda. Hovhannisyan stated that the person in the video was clearly a civilian, since his appearance does not resemble those who serve in the Artsakh Armed Forces.

Armenpress reported that according to the official voters’ registry in Armenia, the address of a Zaven Karapetyan is noted in Vanadzor, Lori and not Dovegh.

Dovegh Mayor Samvel Gorginyan also assured Armenian news outlets that an individual named Zaven Karapetyan does not reside in the village.

Meanwhile, Vanadzor’s Mayor Mamikon Aslanyan confirmed that Zaven Karapetyan is an Armenian citizen who has been previously convicted and suffers from a mental ilness. According to the mayor, he was registered at an elderly home to receive a passport, but did not have a specific place of residence. Aslanyan was certain that Karapetyan was not a military man.

Contrary to the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry’s statement, it was also reported that an Azerbaijani social media user Khasim Masimov posted on Facebook that a 50-year-old Armenian civilian had crossed the Armenian-Azerbaijani border. According to Masimov, the Armenian civilian, who crossed the border near the village of Kerimli, was discovered by locals, who then notified the military. Masimov said that the Armenian civilian was then taken away by authorities to be presented as an Armenian saboteur.

Armenpress later reported that other Azerbaijani social media users responded to Masimov’s post and mocked it, saying that the Azerbaijani government would not have done such a thing to the Armenian civilian and would have instead glorified him as a part of a peace platform. Masimov deleted the Facebook post shortly after.

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