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Amnesty International calls for investigation into alleged war crimes in Nagorno-Karabakh

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By Euronews with AFP
Mountains near the village of Berdashen in the region of Nagorno-Karabakh
Mountains near the village of Berdashen in the region of Nagorno-Karabakh   -   Copyright  AP Photo/Sergei Grits
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Amnesty International has called for an independent investigation to identify the perpetrators of war crimes allegedly committed by Azerbaijani and Armenian forces during recent fighting in Nagorno-Karabakh.

The NGO said it had verified and analysed more than twenty videos which showed "extrajudicial executions, the mistreatment of prisoners of war and other captives, and desecration of the dead bodies of enemy soldiers".

Injuries visible in the videos have also been independently confirmed by a medical expert, according to Amnesty.

Many of the recordings had been shared within the last three weeks by private accounts and groups on the messaging platform, Telegram.

"The perpetrators - as well as any commanding officers who ordered, allowed or condoned these crimes - must be brought to justice," said Amnesty International's Denis Krivocheev in a statement.

Krivocheev added that the NGO is calling for "independent" and "impartial" investigations by the Azerbaijani and Armenian authorities.

"The depravity and lack of humanity captured in these videos shows the deliberate intention to cause ultimate harm and humiliation to victims," added Krivosheev, the NGO's Research Director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

In total, the NGO says it has authenticated twelve videos showing abuses committed by the Armenian forces and ten by the Azerbaijani army.

Acts of violence against detained people, including prisoners of war, is prohibited under international humanitarian law.

A fierce war between the Azeri army and Armenian separatists supported by Yerevan broke out at the end of September.

Armenia and Azerbaijan also accused each other of bombing civilian areas or using prohibited weapons including cluster bombs and phosphorus during the fighting.

The clashes, which lasted six weeks, resulted in more than 5,000 deaths and concluded with the signing of a peace plan agreement on 9 November.