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Azerbaijan's army tops second among post-Soviet states after Russia - military expert

3 November 2023 20:00 (UTC+04:00)
Azerbaijan's army tops second among post-Soviet states after Russia - military expert
Qabil Ashirov
Qabil Ashirov
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On November 2, 2023, Azerbaijan announced the allocation of 3 billion manats to strengthen its defense potential and further improve its material and technical support in 2024. It was expected news since the defense budgets of neighboring countries are being increased gradually. However, the allocated amount raises the question of whether it is enough.

Speaking to Azernews on the issue, the military expert Ramil Mammadli noted that technology in the military is developing and the importance of acquiring these technologies is increasing. As we know, there is a difference in prices between the weapons market 3-5 years ago and the market today. In other words, prices have risen.

"The price difference has increased to 50 percent in some weapons and up to two times in the other ones. There is also an increase in the prices of other products and equipment needed for the army, in addition to weapons and equipment. Of course, the allocated funds will be related to meeting these needs. This, in turn, will serve to maintain the strength and capabilities of the Azerbaijani army and will make it one of the strongest states not only in the region but also in the world," Ramil Mammadli said.

As for the analysis of Azerbaijan's military power in the region, more precisely in the South Caucasus, the military pundit noted that Azerbaijan is one of the leading countries in the South Caucasus from a military point of view. Besides, among the republics of the former Soviet Union, the Azerbaijani army was the strongest army after Russia until the inception of the Ukrainian conflict in February 2022.

"As is known, Western countries helped Ukraine strengthen its army. Today, we can say that the Ukrainian army is strong. However, it should not be forgotten that the Ukrainian army has not gone through the same combat path as Azerbaijan and does not have such material and technical capabilities. Taking all this into account, we can say that the Azerbaijani army is the first strongest in the South Caucasus, in terms of professionalism, the second strongest after Russia in the former Soviet Union, an army that ranks in the top five among the countries located in the Mediterranean Caspian Black Sea basin, etc. In general, we can see that the capabilities of the Azerbaijani army are quite wide. The capabilities of the Azerbaijani army in terms of air defense, missile artillery systems, rocket launcher systems, artillery systems, tactical missile complexes, as well as missiles and other technologies, are extremely high. It is at least one of the three most powerful countries in the region," Ramil Mammadli added.

He also touched on the issue of Armenia being the most militarized country in Europe. The pundit pointed out that it relates to the amount of the Armenian state budget. Armenia's state budget is generally small, and therefore the budget allocated for its military is high percentage-wise. In Azerbaijan, the state budget is large, and consequently, the interest rate is low.

"Azerbaijan allocates quite a lot of funds for strengthening the army's potential, and this is normal. Because Azerbaijan still lives in a tense region, there are still certain threats, and to maintain its independence, and military and political stability, special attention should be paid to the military and security sphere. High costs should not be a concern," Ramil Mammadli said.

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Qabil Ashirov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @g_Ashirov

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