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Azerbaijan Sentences Armenian POW Gagik Voskanyan to 18 Years in Prison

Azerbaijan Sentences Armenian POW Gagik Voskanyan to 18 Years in Prison

Azerbaijani court has handed an 18-year prison sentence to Gagik Voskanyan, an Armenian national held in captivity by Azerbaijan. The trial concerning Voskanyan's detainment was conducted in Azerbaijan on Thursday, leading to the court's verdict.

The Azerbaijani authorities portrayed Voskanyan as a "saboteur," alleging his involvement in a supposed sabotage attempt directed towards Kelbajar on August 16. Azerbaijan claimed to have thwarted this infiltration by employing firearms and apprehending Voskanyan. However, Armenia's Ministry of Defense vehemently refuted these allegations, denouncing them as unfounded fabrications.

Prior to Azerbaijan's official announcement regarding the incident, Armenia's Ministry of Defense had initially disclosed that Voskanyan, identified as an Armenian reservist, had reportedly deserted his combat position. However, as Azerbaijan remained silent on the matter, Armenian authorities had expressed their intent to investigate the circumstances leading to Voskanyan's presence in Azerbaijani territory.

Despite these assertions and the subsequent four months that followed, the Armenian side did not provide further elucidations or clarifications regarding the situation. Both Azerbaijani and Armenian state agencies have yet to unveil the specifics surrounding Voskanyan's presence within Azerbaijan's borders.

The trial's outcome, culminating in a bogus 18-year prison sentence, adds a new layer of complexity to the longstanding tensions between Azerbaijan and Armenia. This development further accentuates the contentious nature of cross-border conflicts and the challenges faced in clarifying and resolving such detainment incidents between the two nations.

The sentencing of Gagik Voskanyan to an 18-year prison term escalates the already strained relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia. The lack of clarity surrounding Voskanyan's circumstances and the contrasting narratives presented by both sides continues to contribute to the complexity of this issue, further complicating the ongoing dialogue and peace-building efforts between the nations involved.


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