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Azerbaijani leader in SCO Summit to discuss Armenia’s fresh provocations with leaders

15 September 2022 20:27 (UTC+04:00)
Azerbaijani leader in SCO Summit to discuss Armenia’s fresh provocations with leaders

By Fuad Muxtar-Aqbabali

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev is visiting Uzbekistan’s Samarkand to partake in the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

Prior to the summit, where the leaders of the SCO member nations are slated to attend amid the protracted and disastrous Russian war in Ukraine, the latest deadly clashes on the Armenian-Azerbaijani state border, to name a few, President Ilham Aliyev’s presence is crucial in terms of updating the nation’s allies and opponents about the unfolding developments in the South Caucasus.

This is doubly vital when official Yerevan is desisting from Baku’s tenacious calls for ending nearly 30-year-long enmity by hammering out a long-desired peace treaty that would be conducive to the region’s return to a peaceful life and economic prosperity. However, Armenia’s constant provocations and reluctance to sign a peace deal as envisaged under agreements signed with Azerbaijan indicate that peace will not soon come to the region.

Armenia, in an attempt to derail the outcome of the fourth Brussels meeting with Azerbaijan, resorted yet to another provocation on the border on the night leading to September 13, in which Azerbaijan lost 71 troops in defense of the nation’s territorial integrity.

In his turn, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said in parliament on September 14 that his nation’s losses amounted to 105 servicemen, whereas Azerbaijan’s statement about its readiness to unilaterally hand over 100 slain bodies to Yerevan indicates that their losses are much higher than claimed.

In Samarkand, the Azerbaijani president will meet Russia’s Vladimir Putin to discuss the fresh clashes with Armenia, where Moscow has two military bases and played a crucial role in rescuing Armenia from a complete defeat of Azerbaijan in November 2020.

"Tomorrow a conversation will take place with President Aliyev. Of course, it will also be at the top of the agenda," TASS said, citing Peskov. The presidential spokesperson recalled that Vladimir Putin had already held a telephone conversation with Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan.

"The day before, there was a conversation between the president and prime minister Pashinyan, quite a long one," he added without divulging details. He also noted that the Kremlin-led Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) had decided to send an inspection group to the region to prepare a report for the CSTO heads of state.

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan has decided to skip the SCO summit over border fighting with Azerbaijan.

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan will not attend the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in Samarkand in Uzbekistan in view of the current situation, Armenpress quoted the government’s press office as saying.

In the wake of the outbreak of the fighting on the night leading to 13 September, Yerevan asked CSTO for assistance in resolving the situation. The Armenian foreign minister opined that a CSTO mission chaired by Secretary-General Stanislav Zas would arrive in Armenia on 15 September to assess the situation on the ground.

Armenia’s disastrous defeat in the Second Karabakh War has led to a qualitatively new situation in the region and Azerbaijan has reached the conditional border with Armenia and any military provocation or sabotage causes fierce battles directly near the Armenian territory.

Pashinyan, at every opportunity, unfoundedly declares his readiness for peace but de facto he wants to avenge. Neither in Moscow nor in Brussels did the parties come close to signing agreements on unblocking communications and opening the long-awaited Zangazur Corridor.

Armenia is also in no hurry with the withdrawal of illegal formations from the zone of responsibility of Russian peacekeepers. At the talks, Pashinyan takes a cynical and ambiguous position: without refuting any of the settlement principles put forward by Azerbaijan, Pashinyan de facto torpedoes the implementation of the main agreements.

With great difficulty, overcoming enormous resistance, the government of Azerbaijan managed to achieve the implementation of the most important clause of the Moscow agreement on the liberation of Lacin.

The tough position of the Azerbaijani leadership, primarily President Ilham Aliyev, who discussed the situation with the chiefs of the power-wielding bodies the day before, is quite expected. Aliyev has repeatedly and publicly warned Pashinyan and the Armenian society cultivating militant revanchism about the unpredictable grave consequences of the disastrous policy of whipping up the confrontation.

The Armenian prime minister hoped that his government will be able to impose its political agenda on Azerbaijan with the tactics of military intimidation. Pashinyan’s hopes to internationalize the post-conflict situation, involving the CSTO, France, and its Western allies in a new round of hostilities also backfired.

The efforts of Armenia and its Diaspora to rally international support ended in a fiasco - a complete fiasco! Armenia has not only lost strategic heights along the border, but also the border military infrastructure created after the 2020 war.

The new air defense system delivered immediately after the war from Russia was razed to the ground. Another bitter defeat caused an internal political flurry and a new wave of protests in Yerevan. The Karabakh agenda has again given way to internal political conflicts.

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