The Azerbaijani army has liberated 16 more villages in the Upper Karabakh region from Armenia’s occupation, Azerbaijan’s president announced on Saturday.

“Victorious Armed Forces of Azerbaijan liberated Yuxari Veyselli, Yuxari Seyidehmedli, Gorgan, Uchunju Mahmudlu, Gachar and Divanalilar villages of Fuzuli, Yukhari Mezre and Yanarhach villages of Jabrayil, Gezyan, Balasoltanli and Merdanli villages of Gubadli, Beshdeli village of Zangilan, Garabulag and Moshmakhat villages of Khojaly, Atagut and Tsakuri of Khojavend,” Ilham Aliyev said on Twitter.

Since clashes erupted on Sept. 27, Armenia has repeatedly attacked Azerbaijani civilians and forces, even violating three humanitarian cease-fires since Oct. 10.

Relations between the two former Soviet republics have been tense since 1991 when the Armenian military occupied Upper Karabakh, or Nagorno-Karabakh, an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan, and surrounding regions.

About 20% of Azerbaijan’s territory — including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions — has been under illegal Armenian occupation for nearly three decades.

While world powers have called for a sustainable cease-fire, Turkey has supported Baku’s right to self-defense and demanded the withdrawal of Armenia’s occupying forces.

Multiple UN resolutions also call for the withdrawal of the invading forces.

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