By | Rachel Brooks
October 28, 2020
Above, the hands of children seen under the tarp covering their remains.
The death toll increases from the scene of Barda’s shelling. Death counts have now risen to 21, citing Hurriyet News. Dozens of others have been wounded as the airstrikes continued on October 28, following a bloody day on October 27. The Hurriyet report places the wounded toll at 70. This number may be changed as wounded parties may succumb or more people are found in the rubble.
The Assistant to the President Hikmet Hajiyev responded to the rising death toll when the number of the dead was counted at 20.
“In Barda number of killed more than 20. The number of wounded reached 60. Armenia used cluster munitions to inflict excessive casualties among civilians. It is the policy of state terror by Armenia. Deliberately, the city center of Barda was targeted,” tweeted Hajiyev.
At least 13 people were killed in the shelling on October 27. The funeral of an eight-year-old child killed in the blast on October 27 was held amid compounded tragedy. Get the story here.
On the second day of shelling, events that killed at least 14 civilians were first reported occurring at approximately 15:00 local time. Get the story here.
Hurriyet cited Hajiyev, who stated that the munitions used against Barda on both days were Smerch cluster munitions. Hajiyev states that Armenia deliberately targeted Barda.
Hajiyev also provided further evidence, through the photography of the missile ordinance, that cluster munitions were used in the bombing of Barda, for the second day in a row.
Further footage and photographic evidence emerge from the scene of the shelling of Barda, which is outside the conflict zone. Despite this fact, the Armenian government continues to deny that the attack took place.
Likewise, several Armenian diaspora community members responded to the evidence of the attacks with praise. The names of these individuals will only include first names or usernames to protect their privacy in the following quotes.
“Long live the Armenian Missiles. Keep them coming!!” said “Mikkel”.
“This is the dish you cooked yourself. Be careful about Minge…” said zaretoros.
While the diaspora of Armenians scorned the death and violence dealt with the noncombatants of Barda, the Armenian government had denied the attacks of October 27. Analyst Paul Goble stated the belief that Armenia continues to shell civilian settlements to provoke Russian intervention. See more of this story here.
Despite the motives, the loss was still felt throughout the nation of Azerbaijan.
A man with the first name of Jahangir noted that he had lost a member of his family in the shelling.
“Today I have lost one of my relatives in #Bardacity attack. Ruslan was 35 years old, just 35 years with two small kids,” said Jahangir.”
“Arm. military attacks on civilians just left two more kids without a father.”
Many of his friends and relations wished him peace. He had a word for those well-wishers, and hopes for the end of the civilian targeting violence.
“Peace for all the civilians from both sides,” tweeted Jahangir, while replying to a woman named Diana.
The shelling of Barda follows the shelling of Ganja city, Azerbaijan’s second-largest city. Both locations are outside the conflict zone. In addition to bombing Barda and Ganja, civilian settlements on the Azerbaijani line within the Nagorno-Karabakh region have been shelled. Frequent reports emerge citing the repeated shelling of Tartar.
Russian news agency TASS and other sources state that Barda has been subjected to shelling over October and that the incidents of October 27 and 28 are not isolated events.
The United States responded to the ceasefire violations on October 27.
“During separate calls with Nikol Pashinyan and President Aliyev, I pressed the leaders to uphold their commitments to cease hostilities and pursue a diplomatic solution in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Armenians and Azerbaijanis deserve to live in peace,” tweeted U.S. State Secretary Mike Pompeo.
Mr. Pompeo did not follow up again on October 28, as of the time of this reporting.