The recent visit of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs to the conflict region was remembered primarily by the fact that the mediators came under fire during the planned monitoring at one of the frontline sections. Do you think this will encourage the mediators to be active?
It would be a sin to say so but even if any of the co-chairs was seriously injured as a result of this incident, this would not cause radical changes and transformation of the attitude of the OSCE Minsk Group to the resolution of the Karabakh conflict.
It is necessary to realize that the co-chairs are the figures representing the interests of the co-chairing states which, as it is already clear, are ready to conflict in the international arena on many other problems of the world policy, but in case with the Karabakh settlement actually have the single positions, sparing no effort to keep the conflict in a frozen state as long as possible.
It occurs for a huge number of reasons, including the theoretical approaches to the issues of war and peace, which dominate in the political space of these countries, protection of their interests and willing to have the instrument of political pressure on official Baku in order to achieve concessions in economic and political spheres.
Thus, the indicated incident will not have a real, significant and noticeable impact on co-chairs mediatory activity.
Another feature of this visit became the fact that at the meeting with the members of the Azerbaijani community of Nagorno Karabakh, the co-chairs were sharply criticized for their passiveness and unwillingness to say ‘who is who’ in the conflict. The official meeting of the President of Azerbaijan with the mediators, usually incredibly short, this time was much longer and included the sharp statements in relation to Armenia’s position in the negotiations…
It all shows that Azerbaijan is not simply unpleased with the activity of the OSCE Minsk Group on the resolution of the conflict, but is ready to reject its services and start searching other ways to solution of the Karabakh conflict, and the use of force for liberation of the occupied lands is not ruled out.
Azerbaijani side pays special attention to the recent attributing of Nagorno Karabakh to Armenia by President Sargsyan, which was regarded in Baku as an open recognition of the attempt to legalize annexation of part of Azerbaijani lands. What do you think was the motive behind Sargsyan’s statement who has recently said that Armenia joined EEC without Karabakh and surrounding lands because Yerevan does not consider these lands to be part of Armenia?
The complex political and economic situation forming in the post-Soviet area before our eyes deals the stronger blow to the former soviet republics which have not reached significant successes in the modernization of their economy and fully depend on Russia’s support in this issue. It is no secret that Armenia actually is on the top of the list.
Meanwhile, Armenian public have long been traditionally put the blame for most of their problems on everyone except for their authorities. On their part, the Armenian political elite made great efforts for such perception of the existing reality to remain usual for most citizens of Armenia.
However, due to continued worsening of socioeconomic problems in Armenia the population of the country started to realize that the incumbent power of this country bears a serious share of responsibility for the grave condition of Armenia today. The protest actions in Yerevan have recently become the best evidence to this.
It is not surprising that in these conditions the political elite of Armenia dominated by those who originate from the so-called ‘Karabakh clan’ are trying to distract the attention of Armenian population from the real problems and again start playing the nationalistic card, including the problem of Karabakh settlement in order to engage Armenians in a fight ‘for bright future’ so that to prevent them from thinking about their sad present and quite a vague future.
Nonetheless, in their final statement the co-chairs informed that they had achieved an agreement with the presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia about holding their next meeting until the end of the year. Are there reasons for optimism in connection with this meeting?
I think that it is impossible to fully exclude any breakthrough in Karabakh conflict settlement. But as we have already noted the fact of continued confrontation of Armenia and Azerbaijan is used by the ruling elite of Armenia for preservation of their power through promoting extremely nationalistic ideas.
The only ‘achievement’ of these people is their contribution to the occupation of Azerbaijani lands by Armenian armed formations at the first stage of Karabakh war which, however, turned Armenia into a regional economic and political outsider.
I would like to repeat that their goal is the ‘bright past’ of their country rather than its future. This means that they will not take real efforts to resolve the conflict, thus coming closer to a new war or economic collapse of their country.