In the first three days of the April war, the Azerbaijani Army defeated the Armenian forces with a small number of military members, Azerbaijani Defense Minister Colonel General Zakir Hasanov said about the details of his phone conversation with Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu.
“No document of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, of which Armenia is a member, envisages defense of Nagorno-Karabakh, as one of the tasks of the organization. Thus, it is an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan. After partially destroying the Armenian army during the military operations in 2016, we recaptured Lalatapa heights and started advancing towards Talish hills. At that time, they called Russia and Sergei Shoigu, begging to ask us to stop the army. During our phone talk, I explained to the Russian Defense Minister that this was only a counter-attack, a response to their provocation. We aim to force them to retreat from the frontline settlements with the limited number of forces,” said the Colonel-General.
Hasanov noted that the retaliatory strike of the Azerbaijani Army panicked Armenia.
The Defense Minister stressed that the military operations in 2016 were a trial for the Azerbaijani Army, which went through reforms.
“We had started reforms in the army, and we needed to confirm whether we were on the right path or building a professional army. “Many forget the local military operations of 2015 when the Armenian side suffered heavy losses. At that time, they lost their helicopter as well. We should not forget this.”
“The success that the Azerbaijani Army achieve in recent years is obvious. Above all, those battles have fostered the fighting spirit of the army and patriotism in the country. In 2016, thousands of young people sought to join the army voluntarily and fight for the Motherland, which was extremely important,” Hasanov added.