Azerbaijan offers Armenia to begin bilateral negotiations on border demarcation
Azerbaijan offered Armenia to start bilateral negotiations on the delimitation and demarcation of borders. The proposal was voiced by the country’s foreign minister Jeyhun Bayramov who said that Azerbaijan expects a positive reaction from Armenia. But despite this, lately, local conflicts have continued on the undefined border between the two countries, and experts express different opinions on this matter.
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Azerbaijan’s proposal to Armenia
There is no alternative for good-neighborly relations for the sake of establishing long-term peace and stability in the region, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov said speaking at the 43rd meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the BSEC Member States.
“There is a unique chance to establish such relations through the implementation of the decisions reflected in the trilateral statement signed by the heads of both countries”, he said.
“We offer Armenia to start bilateral negotiations on border delimitation and demarcation. Azerbaijan expects a positive reaction from Armenia”, the Azerbaijani Foreign Minister added.
Is there a need for a “safety zone”?
The next day after the local conflict with the participation of Azerbaijani border guards in the border section of the Syunik region of Armenia, the ombudsman of Armenia Arman Tatoyan voiced the need for a “security zone” between the two countries.
These words were voiced after the Azerbaijani servicemen “tried to prevent” local residents from collect the mowed grass.
If the borders are determined, there will be no need for a “security zone”, Azerbaijani political scientist Agshin Huseynov believes:
“According to the human rights defender of Armenia, it turns out that there are no Armenian servicemen in that area since the local residents are in direct contact with the Azerbaijani border guards. In this case, Tatoyan, first of all, needs to turn to the authorities of his own country so that the border is guarded by border guards or other servicemen.
Azerbaijan has state borders with several countries, and the fact that on both sides of the borders there are border guards of neighboring states and a small section of the neutral zone remains between them, explains the absence of the need for any other security zone.
Here, one reluctantly recalls the period before the de-occupation of Karabakh, when the Azerbaijani regions bordering on Nagorno-Karabakh were under occupation precisely under the pretext of a ‘security belt’. Therefore, such a desire can be described as a kind of nostalgia”.
Who will stand on the other side of the border?
Official sources in Armenia have spoken several times about the possibility of protecting the state border with Azerbaijan by Russian border guards and about negotiations on this subject with Russia.
The statement of the Secretary of the Security Council of Armenia Mher Grigoryan about the deployment of Russian border guards along the border with Azerbaijan appeared right after the parliamentary elections in Armenia, a political observer of the Atlas Research Center Samir Humbatov emphasized, commenting on this issue.
“This shows that Russia still keeps Armenia under its influence.
Personally, I believe that after the beginning of the protection of the borders of Armenia, adjacent to Azerbaijan, the Russian border guards will not later transfer these posts to the Armenian border guards. I don’t think this scenario is possible.
As for the process of delimitation and demarcation, in 1992, when Azerbaijan and Armenia joined the UN, the state borders of these two countries were specifically defined and recognized by the international community.
Russia’s activation in this matter is a response to Nikol Pashinyan’s calls for border protection to the OSCE and Western countries during the pre-election period. In this sense, Russia is afraid of losing Armenia and is doing everything possible not to”, Humbatov said.
Why is the delimitation process delayed?
Armenia “sooner or later will create a working group on delimitation”, political scientist Ali Hajizade said.
“If this does not happen, then Azerbaijan will single-handedly unilaterally carry out delimitation and demarcation, and Armenia will have to come to terms with the de-facto borders that will appear”, the political scientist said.
In his words, Armenia is interested in delaying the process:
“Pashinyan does not think about long-term and expresses the thoughts that will please the crowd. He is somewhat interested in border tensions and while these tensions continue, Pashinyan will insist that it is not yet time to talk about delimitation and demarcation.
With these methods, they try to delay the process as much as possible, hoping at random. Even their leading politicians speak out in the spirit of “just wait a little, and it will get better”.
Ilham Aliyev on borders and peace treaty
President Ilham Aliyev also commented on the topic of defining state borders with Armenia, speaking on June 26, on the day of the 103rd anniversary of the creation of the armed forces of Azerbaijan:
“I have repeatedly spoken about this, I want to say once again that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has been resolved, Armenia must also accept it this way and carry out work to establish borders with us. A delimitation working group needs to be created. Work must go on preparing for a peace treaty. We declare this”, Aliyev said.