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July 26
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On Wednesday morning, nine Azerbaijani servicemen stole a cow and a newborn calf from the shepherd of the pasture of Verin Shorzha village of Gegharkunik Province of Armenia. The Human Rights Defender (Ombudsman) of the Republic of Armenia (RA), Arman Tatoyan, informs about this on Facebook on the same day.

"In particular, based on the reports received today, the Human Rights Defender's Office found out that the shepherd of the pasture of Verin Shorzha village, a resident of Vardenis community of Gegharkunik Province, woke up to Azerbaijani shots at around 5:30 this morning.

As soon as he woke up, he found out that the Azerbaijani soldiers were shooting at his cattle, which were in the open at that time, in the immediate vicinity of his place of residence.

He quickly went to the animals and found that one cow and a newborn calf were not there. Shortly afterwards, he noticed that 9 Azerbaijani armed servicemen were driving the cow and the calf to their positions. Together with the other shepherds, they tried to bring back the animals, which at that moment started running towards the shepherds.

However, the Azerbaijani soldiers started firing at the animals and damaged the cow's leg, preventing them from reaching the shepherds. Shots were fired at the shepherds, too.

Then, the shepherds observed how already 4 hours after the theft, at around 9:30am, the Azerbaijani soldiers were slaughtering the cow in their positions.

The RA Human Rights Defender specifically states that this theft has taken place in the RA sovereign territory, and the Azerbaijani servicemen have come down from the positions that are illegally deployed in the RA sovereign territory.

All the noted circumstances of the incident were confirmed to the Human Rights Defender's staff by all the other shepherds, they were checked.

This incident of a crime proves once again that the protection of the rights of the RA population from the criminal acts of the Azerbaijani armed forces requires, with absolute urgency, the presence of a security zone [in the area]," Tatoyan added, in particular.

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