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Experts see future of South Caucasus in peace, cooperation [PHOTO]

21 December 2021 17:59 (UTC+04:00)
Experts see future of South Caucasus in peace, cooperation [PHOTO]

By Vugar Khalilov

Experts see the South Caucasus region's prosperous future in peace and cooperation among the regional countries, Trend has reported.

They made the remarks at the Baku-based international round table "Russia-Azerbaijan in a new system of regional security and economic cooperation. Results of the year and prospects".

Speaking at the event, the president of Russia's “Consulting-Analytics-PR” Union of Companies, Ismayil Aghakishiyev, said that along with Azerbaijan and Armenia, every country in the South Caucasus needs peace in the region.

"Dialogue between the peoples of Azerbaijan and Armenia is necessary. Why do Russian peacekeepers [temporarily stationed in some parts of Azerbaijan’s Karabakh region under a trilateral Azerbaijani-Russian-Armenian ceasefire deal to end the 44-day war in 2020] do so much in this area, but Russian, Azerbaijani and Armenian creative intelligentsia and business are passive? For dialogue between these parties there are already appropriate platforms in Baku, Moscow and Yerevan," Agakishiyev underlined.

He emphasized that conducting an active dialogue is necessary in this format and people who work in this direction should not think about their personal gains from the process.

They should rather think about loyalty to their nation, the expert added.

“Without stability in the region, there will be no regional, Eurasian and other projects," Aghakishiyev said.

The union’s president stressed the regional nations should treat each other with respect, if they want to be respected by other countries in the world.

"There is no need to exaggerate the role of third countries, everything depends on us. The more active are dialogues between our countries, the sooner these issues will be resolved," he added.

Meanwhile, Azerbaijani International Relations Analysis Center Chairman Farid Shafiyev said that founding out the new spheres of cooperation between Azerbaijan and Russia is crucial.

Addressing the roundtable, Shafiyev highlighted the stabilizing role of the Russian peacekeepers in the region.

He added that as an owner of the Armenian Railways, Russia’s involvement in the reconstruction of transport corridors in the South Caucasus is noteworthy.

“The group on the delimitation and demarcation of borders, in which Russia also takes an active part, creates a positive atmosphere in the settlement of relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia,” Shafiyev stressed.

He also highlighted the importance of such discussions and workshops with the participation of experts.

“We would like the South Caucasus to be a region of cooperation between Turkey and Russia, rather than a region of rivalry,” Shafiyev said.

Azerbaijan and Armenia resumed the second war after the latter started firing at Azerbaijani civilians and military positions starting September 27, 2020. The war ended on November 10 with the signing of a trilateral ceasefire deal by the Azerbaijani, Russian and Armenian leaders.

The ceasefire agreement stipulated the return of Azerbaijan's Armenian-occupied Kalbajar, Aghdam and Lachin regions. Before the signing of the deal, the Azerbaijani army had liberated around 300 villages, settlements, city centers, and historic Shusha city. The Azerbaijani army declared a victory against the Armenian troops.

The signed agreement obliged Armenia to withdraw all its troops from the Azerbaijani lands that it had occupied since the early 1990s.

About 2,000 Russian peacekeepers have been deployed for five years in Karabakh under the trilateral cease-fire deal signed by Baku, Moscow and Yerevan on 10 November 2020.

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