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Israeli defence system shot down Russian missile Yerevan fired at Baku

19:45, Tuesday, 02 March, 2021
Israeli defence system shot down Russian missile Yerevan fired at Baku

Armenia launched at least one Russian-made short-range Iskander ballistic missile at Baku in November during the Nagorno-Karabakh war, but it was shot down by Azerbaijan, a senior official briefed on the incident told Middle East Eye.
     Armenia and Azerbaijan agreed on a Russia and Turkey-brokered ceasefire after six weeks of heavy fighting in November, following the Azerbaijani army’s seizure of the strategic city of Shusha (known as Shushi in Armenian).

According to the senior official, Russia encouraged Armenia to use Iskandar missiles and provided material support for their launch, in order to compel Azerbaijan, which was capturing territory at a fast rate, to give the ceasefire a chance.“An Iskander ballistic missile was launched by Yerevan directly into the capital days before the ceasefire. It was concerning for Azerbaijani officials. But a missile defence system operated by the Azerbaijani military, an Israeli-made Barak-8, shot it down,” the official said.

“Further use of these missiles could really escalate the situation on the ground. And I think, among other things, it convinced the Azerbaijani leadership to go for a ceasefire.”

Azerbaijan has an operational land-based version of Barak 8-system with 12 launchers and 75 surface-to-air missiles, which could have been used to take down missiles like the Iskander. The system was acquired by Azerbaijan in 2018 and has been tested.Video footage, which appeared on social media hours before the declared ceasefire on 9 November, indicated that Armenia launched an Iskandar missile into Azerbaijani territory.

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