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The Daily Beast

Armenians Fear Turkey Is Back to Finish Off the Genocide

MOSCOW—The fighting in a mountain enclave in the Caucasus escalated Tuesday when Turkish-backed forces shelled five villages including the capital of Stepanakert, according to Armenian officials.Skirmishes broke out on the border of Azerbaijan and Armenia over the weekend and the official death toll is over 100 as a decades-old dispute over the Nagorno-Karabakh or the Republic of Artsakh erupted into violence.Artsakh is an ethnic Armenian pocket that was once part of Azerbaijan’s territory but now hews closely to Armenia against the wishes of Turkey, which has lucrative oil and gas deals with Azerbaijan and a long-standing enmity with Armenia.Turkey Sends ISIS Warlord to Azerbaijan to Face Off Against Putin’s Armenian Allies“We fight not only with Azerbaijan, with Turkey and thousands of its mercenary soldiers from the Middle East,” Masis Mailyan, foreign minister of the self-proclaimed Republic of Artsakh, told The Daily Beast in a phone interview on Tuesday. “This morning the attackers shelled an Armenian town of Vardenis. This is the continuation of the Turkish genocide against Armenian people. The genocide, that the U.S. Congress officially recognized in a resolution last year, affirming that the Turkey exterminated 1.5 million Armenians.”Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan has fueled the war between Azerbaijan and Armenia, but he blames mediators for failing to solve the territorial dispute since a ceasefire in 1994. “The United States, Russia and France have not been able to resolve the conflict for almost 30 years. On the contrary, they are doing everything they can to prolong the problem,” Erdogan said in half an hour speech on Tuesday. “Azerbaijan has already listened to you for 30 years! But whose lands are occupied? Azerbaijan’s!”Civilians, including women and children, were reported killed on both sides. Tanks burned, armed drones