Civilian was shot dead by Azerbaijani forces in Martaket

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An Armenian farmer in Republic of Artsakh was shot dead by Azerbaijani forces while working in his pomegranate grove at the weekend, authorities in Stepanakert said.

The 55-year-old man, Aram Tepnants, was a resident of Martakert, a small town in northern Karabakh town close to the Artsakh-Azerbaijani “line of contact”.

“He worked with his own tractor and in his own grove,” a spokesman for the Karabakh police, “An Azerbaijani army sniper noticed him and fired in that direction, fatally wounding him.”

The Martakert mayor, Misha Gyurjian, said that Russian peacekeeping soldiers deployed along the “line of contact” witnessed the incident. “Peacekeepers were sitting with [Tepnants] inside his tractor,” claimed Gyurjian.

The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed on Sunday that the farmer was killed “as a result of gunfire from the Azerbaijani side.”

“The Russian [peacekeeping] contingent command is conducting an investigation into the incident with the participation of representatives of the two sides,” the ministry said in a statement.