"Conditions for decision-making are deteriorating": Opinion from Baku on situation in Karabakh
Opinion from Baku on situation in Karabakh
The protest by Azerbaijani activists on the Lachin road has gone on now for twenty-three days, with none of their demands having been explicitly met. The road connecting Khankendi (Stepanakert) with Armenia is blocked by the Russian peacekeeping contingent, and the Karabakh Armenians have declared the region under blockade. “There is less and less time to act, the conditions for decision-making are deteriorating, the room for maneuvers is narrowing,” Azerbaijani political scientist Farhad Mammadov believes.
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During this time, the vehicles of peacekeepers and at times the Red Cross have passed through the corridor without hindrance. The passage of other modes of transport on the road was not observed.
Azerbaijani political scientist Farhad Mammadov commented on the situation in the region.
“There is a gradual habituation to the Lachin protest”
“The “Lachin protest” of Azerbaijani eco-activists continues. Armenia, the Armenian diaspora, the patrons of Armenia in France, India and others like them have made the most of what they were capable of in terms of information these days. Pro-Armenian politicians and journalists are already on the second and third rounds of unsubscribing on Twitter, trying to catch up with the tragedy, without touching on the cause of the current situation,” Mammadov noted.
“Along with this fuss, there is a gradual getting used to of the situation,” Mammadov says:
“This creates the basis for the mediators to ask themselves a question – why did all this come about how do we get out of it. And mediators will be asking this question in the very near future, as the New Year holidays have died down and people dealing with this topic get to work.”
“No EU missions will convince Azerbaijanis that they are right”
Farhad Mammadov recalled the statement of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev that this situation is not an obstacle to the conclusion of a peace treaty.
“This is an open message to the mediators, so that they continue the work they have begun and bring the leadership of Armenia to a decision.
Yerevan’s continuation of the policy of dragging out the process and direct interference in the internal affairs of Azerbaijan will have consequences in drawing up a territorial claim in return.
When a peace treaty is concluded, Azerbaijanis will be able to visit their native lands; if the confrontation continues, Azerbaijan will react asymmetrically to any provocations of the Armenian Armed Forces on the conditional border, as it happened in mid-September. And no EU missions will convince the Azerbaijanis that they are right,” Mammadov averred.
“Pashinyan‘s choice is to give up territorial claims against Azerbaijan not in words, but in deeds. Pashinyan’s manipulations are already costing Armenians both in Armenia and Karabakh dearly,” he added.
“Which mediation will be the most effective?”
Mammadov said that the United States’s behavior is interesting in this context:
“After the meeting of the UN Security Council, various countries appear in the public space: France, India, Russia, Great Britain, the United Arab Emirates, and even Ireland, but not the United States.
Under these conditions, the United States can become more actively involved in the process. There are still rumors about Blinken’s upcoming visit to the region. And the United States has no desire to be associated with France, so we must act.
What will America come with this time?
The “Vardanyan Project” disrupted this process, and the Americans will not play into the hands of Russia. So it is necessary to reformat the proposals and go for what is possible to do now.
That is, to make a breakthrough on the topic of a peace treaty without being tied to the topic of the Armenians of Karabakh, they should leave this topic in the context of Baku-Moscow, let Russia itself get out of the situation that it created … Azerbaijan’s control on the Lachin road in the context of the Russian “Vardanyan project” is very useful … “.
“Conditions for decision-making are deteriorating”
“We expect pragmatism from the United States, especially since Iranian activity near the borders of Azerbaijan and Armenia may have consequences for Washington’s interests.
The peace treaty and Armenian recognition of Karabakh as part of Azerbaijan will allow the United States to acknowledge that ‘Karabakh is Azerbaijan.’
This will equalize the US with Russia in mediation efforts without a physical presence in the region. The Americans should only state their position in accordance with the Almaty Declaration and the UN Charter. This will sober up both Armenian society and its leadership to be more discriminating with statements about “one hundred percent support for Russian initiatives” … and on the other hand, it will be a signal for Baku not to raise the issue of Western Azerbaijan to the level of territorial claims.
There is less and less time for action, the conditions for decision-making are deteriorating, the space for maneuvers is narrowing,” Mammadov concluded.