Azadliq, Baku in Azeri
11 Mar 04, p 1

Armenian raid causes reshuffle of Azeri top brass - paper



Text of an unattributed report by Azerbaijani newspaper Azadliq on 11
March headlined "The generals failed to defend" and subheaded "Was it
possible to prevent the Armenian raid on the village of Alxanli? Two
generals of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces have been sacked"

There have been no official reports as to why two high-ranking
officials of the Defence Ministry have been dismissed, but Azadliq
newspaper has managed to obtain some information on that.

It was reported yesterday [10 March] that [Azerbaijani President]
Ilham Aliyev relieved of their posts National Hero Lt-Gen Talib
Mammadov, the chief of a key department at the Azerbaijani Defence
Ministry, and Maj-Gen Qabil Mammadov, the commander of a unit of the
armed forces. We found out that Talib Mammadov was the head of the
counterintelligence unit, and Qabil Mammadov was in charge of the
army corps.

We learnt from reliable sources that these people were accused of
being irresponsible and dismissed in the wake of the Armenian raid on
Fuzuli District [part of which is controlled by the Armenian forces].
Azadliq was the only paper to carry a report about that raid quoting
reliable sources. The report said that the Azerbaijani armed forces
sustained losses during the raid and the Defence Ministry dispatched
additional forces to the place. We learnt yesterday that the
Armenians raided Alxanli village in Fuzuli District. We contacted
villagers who confirmed the report.

The source said that Talib Mammadov was dismissed over his failure to
report the attack in time, and Qabil Mammadov for taking inadequate
measures to defend the place.