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3 men in Armenia attempt to storm Yerevan police station and 2 are injured by their own grenades

YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) — Three armed men attempted to storm a police station in the Armenian capital of Yerevan on Sunday detonating hand grenades that injured two of the attackers.

The injured assailants were hospitalized with shrapnel wounds from the blast in Yerevan’s northern Nor-Nork district. A third man was detained by police after a brief standoff, Narek Sargsyan, spokesperson for Armenia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs, told journalists. There were no other reported injuries.

The men had hoped to free members of the Combat Brotherhood organization, who were being held at the station after being detained earlier Sunday, Armenian media outlets reported.

The group opposes the planned transfer of several villages in Armenia’s Tavush region to neighboring Azerbaijan.

Last year, Azerbaijan waged a lightning military campaign to reclaim the Karabakh region, ending three decades of ethnic Armenian separatist rule there.

In December, the two sides agreed to begin negotiations on a peace treaty. However, many residents of Armenia’s border regions have resisted the demarcation effort, seeing it as Azerbaijan’s encroachment on the areas they consider their own.

Speaking to residents of the border village of Voskepar in the Tavush region Tuesday, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan warned that Armenia’s refusal to delineate the border could trigger a new confrontation.

“It would mean that a war could erupt by the end of the week,” Pashinyan said. He said the border demarcation should be based on mutual recognition of territorial integrity of Armenia and Azerbaijan based on Soviet maps from 1991, when both were part of the Soviet Union.