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Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh are fighting international terrorism in South Caucasus: interview

Security expert Vladimir Poghosyan

In his interview to EADaily, security expert Vladimir Poghosyan shared his views concerning the current situation in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone and the political aspects of the problem.

How would you comment on the statement by the Azerbaijani defense ministry about “unilateral ceasefire” in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone?

Let’s see. First of all, there can be no unilateral ceasefire. This sounds ridiculous.

From the very beginning of its military campaign against Nagorno-Karabakh, the Azerbaijani army has been sustaining big losses. In the north the Nagorno-Karabakh army has not only regained its positions but has even advanced. In the Martakert direction, near Madaghis and Tavush, it was not an evacuation – as they in Baku claim – but a panic flight.

And now the most important thing: in the south the Azerbaijani army has managed to capture a strategically important high point. The Nagorno-Karabakh army is now trying to take it back. So, one of the reasons why the Azerbaijani authorities have declared a ceasefire is to retain that point. This is their key motive and it has nothing to do with peacefulness or the world community’s calls.

I am sure that the Nagorno-Karabakh troops will not stop until they get that point back. This is why the Azerbaijani authorities want to cease fire – they want to show their people at least one gain amid numerous losses.

What a role does Turkey have in this situation?

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says that he is praying for Azerbaijan and wants it to win without much pain. We know that there are lots of Turkish commanders in Azerbaijan’s General Staff. Turkey is using Azerbaijan for its purposes and Ilham Aliyev is just a pawn in its game. In fact, Azerbaijan is distracting the world community’s attention from Turkey, who has gone too far with UISIL, has caused a flow of refugees to Europe, has plotted terrorist attacks in Paris and has issued an ultimatum to the EU – you give us money and we will think what to do with the refugees.

Even more, the Turks have involved the Azerbaijanis into their anti-Russian game. And Aliyev does not seem to be very much reluctant. Now ISIL terrorists fleeing from Syria may appear in Azerbaijan. There reports that they are already there. Where will they go from Azerbaijan? They have few options – Georgia, Russia or Iran.

Turkey has shown its true face. The world is urging the parties to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict to stop, while the Turkish authorities are urging Azerbaijan to fight till final victory. But there is no hope for any victory. Just one aspect: Turkey is a NATO member but NATO is silent.

The OSCE is planning to discuss the situation in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone in April in Vienna. What decision may be passed there?

What sense does it make to talk about the OSCE if Azerbaijan ignores that structure? Why Apr 5? Perhaps, they are giving Azerbaijan a few days for military actions so as to see a new situation in the conflict zone? But then Nagorno-Karabakh also has chance to improve its positions. The world community’s strategy here is parity, but in this case this is negligence. By refusing to specify who is to blame for this situation, they are conniving killings. The only thing I can’t understand is what Russia needs parity for when Turkey is openly supporting its “brother” and ally Azerbaijan? 

How should Armenia act in this situation?

Armenia should go out of the OSCE MG talks and delegate this mission to Nagorno-Karabakh. How is it that they have recognized Kosovo and have left Nagorno-Karabakh in the basket? Nagorno-Karabakh has more rights to be independent. The Armenian authorities made a criminal mistake when they agreed to negotiate on behalf of Nagorno-Karabakh without Nagorno-Karabakh. This format must be changed. The talks must be held between Nagorno-Karabakh and Azerbaijan, while Armenia must guarantee the security of people. So, now Armenia must recognize Nagorno-Karabakh and must try to make other countries recognize it too.

Why isn’t Europe reacting?

Those guys are none the wiser. They think that their enemy is Russia, while they true enemy is around the corner. For Erdogan terrorism is not only politics but also business, while the Russians have sustained losses just to protect Europe from terrorists. And what do we have as a result? The Europeans are preparing new sanctions against Russia. They have enough victims of their own. So, they will hardly care for others. In the EU politicians can no longer make it out. They are going through a time of idiocy.

We realize what a role Russia played in Syria. In the South Caucasus the fighters against international terrorism are Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh. Armenian structures worldwide must start supporting all anti-Turkish forces. Turkey has declared a war against Armenia. Turkey is urging Azerbaijan to fight till the end. By doing this, Erdogan is pushing its country into an abyss and is pulling Azerbaijan into it.

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