What Do We Know About the Footage Showing the Movement of Military Vehicles in Armenia?

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Reading Time: 4 minutes

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On March 30-31, footage showing the movement of military vehicles was disseminated on Russian-language Telegram channels (1,2,3,4), X (1,2,3), and Facebook (1,2,3,4). According to the attached description, the footage shows the movement of Armenian military equipment in the direction of the Azerbaijani border. In some posts, we find the claim that such activity of the Armenian armed forces has not been observed since September of last year and that Armenia is preparing a new provocation. One Facebook account links Armenia’s actions to the meeting between Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

Armenia

“Myth Detector” traced the geolocation of the vehicles, although it is not known exactly when the video was shot. The EU monitoring mission in Armenia notes that no unusual military movements were detected on March 31.

The position of Azerbaijan

On March 31, the Ministry of Defense of Azerbaijan issued a statement that intensive movement of troops in different directions and the concentration of manpower, armored vehicles, artillery installations, and other heavy firepower of the Armenian armed forces were observed on several sections of the Armenia-Azerbaijan border.

The statement also mentions that “there has been a further activation of revanchist forces threatening Azerbaijan with war,” and that any provocation from Armenia’s side will not be left unanswered by the Azerbaijani army.

The position of Armenia 

The Ministry of Defense of Armenia issued a response statement on the same day. According to the statement, the information spread by the Azerbaijani side does not correspond to reality. As for the released footage, the statement mentions that the photos are part of the training of newly recruited drivers in the Armenian army.

Additionally, in the statement of the Ministry, we read that the Ministry of Defense of Armenia considers the operational situation of the Armenia-Azerbaijan border to be stable and “does not perceive the need to implement additional measures to protect the border.”

Disseminated footage

The disseminated footage combines several videos. None of them are found in open sources until March 30. In one of the videos, we see an armored vehicle moving through an intersection. Using geolocation, we can determine that the footage was shot in the village of Eraskh, Ararat Province, Armenia.

somkheth azerbaijani1 What Do We Know About the Footage Showing the Movement of Military Vehicles in Armenia?
Shots from the videos disseminated on social media
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Photo from the Google Maps Street view

The visuals of this location provided by Google Maps were last updated in 2018, so the environment has changed quite a bit and there are many more buildings around the intersection, however, several details remain unchanged, including the shop (in red), the fence along the road (in yellow) and Gas station (in green color). Additionally, the three-story building next to the store is identical.

In one part of the video, we can see how cars move from the north-west in the direction of Eraskh and continue the road from the intersection to the north-east.

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In another part of the video, the cars can be seen going in the opposite direction during the night hours, which may indicate that they are returning on the same day.

somkheth azerbaijani4 What Do We Know About the Footage Showing the Movement of Military Vehicles in Armenia?
Shots from the videos disseminated on social media

The village Erashkh borders Azerbaijan; however, from the released footage, it is impossible to determine where the armored vehicles started moving and where their destination was, and there is no hard evidence that the videos were taken at the end of March.

Statement from the EU Monitoring Mission

In response to the disseminated information, the EU mission in Armenia published a statement on its X (formerly “Twitter”) account that on March 31, as a result of border monitoring, no unusual military movements were detected.

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As for Pashinyan’s meeting with Ursula von der Leyen and Anthony Blinken, it is scheduled for April 5 in Brussels. According to the US State Department, the mentioned meeting is planned within the framework of Blinken’s visit to France and Belgium, and the subject of discussion will be Armenia’s economic prosperity, efforts to diversify trade partners, and humanitarian needs.

Archive: 1, 2, 3, 4

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