The Russians are worried Jihadis are making their way to the hot conflict in the Southern Caucasus — the Soviet ‘frozen conflict’ of Nagorno-Karabakh. Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) head Sergei Naryshkin said in a statement, published by the SVR press service Tuesday, that Moscow was watching for this terrorist migration.
“The escalating standoff in Karabakh attracts militants from various international terror groups like a magnet,” Naryshkin underscored, reported Russian state news agency TASS.
“We […] cannot stay unconcerned over the fact that southern Caucasus may become a new foothold for the international terror groups, which would allow the militants to infiltrate other states bordering Azerbaijan and Armenia, including Russia,” he said.
“According to the SVR information, mercenaries from international terror group, such as the Nusra Front, the Firqat al-Hamza, the Sultan Murad Division, fighting in the Middle East, as well as Kurdish extremist groups actively converge in [Nagorno-Karabakh] conflict area,” the SVR head said.
Reports are the Islamic nation of Turkey has flown up to 4,000 Syrian fighters into Muslim Azerbaijan to fight Christian Armenia, supported by the Russian Federation.
The conflict has seen heavy damage to civilian areas along the Nagorno-Azer border, with the capital of Stepanakert being hit especially hard by Azerbaijan artillery.
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