ArmInfo.Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan answered questions from European media outlets The Telegraph (UK), European Post (Brussels), Foreign Policy (USA), Tageblatt (Austria) and Il GҐornale (Italy).
The press service of the prime minister reported. According to the source, Pashinyan noted that the main instigator of this war was Turkey, which transferred mercenaries from Syria to Azerbaijan, as well as transferred part of its armed forces, including military equipment, to Azerbaijan, as well as transported certain armed formations from Pakistan.
"They set the task to take control of Nagorno-Karabakh by means of a blitzkrieg. And, according to their calculations, this war should have lasted a maximum of a week, 10 days, but Nagorno-Karabakh continues to fight and will continue to fight for its rights. Since this is not really a territorial dispute, Armenians have lived in Nagorno-Karabakh for millennia, and all this time they were the majority there. There is a huge Armenian cultural heritage in Nagorno-Karabakh: the 5th century church, the 8th, 10th, 13th century Armenian churches. The first Armenian school was founded in Nagorno-Karabakh. And the war, in fact, fixed the resistance of Nagorno-Karabakh at this stage, fixed the imperial policy of Turkey. Because it is quite possible to state that the problem now goes beyond the logic and the framework of the Nagorno-Karabakh problem as such.
And Turkey came here not so much to support Azerbaijan in the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, as to continue its imperial policy. What is now happening in the Caucasus is, in fact, a continuation of the policy pursued by Turkey in the Mediterranean with regard to Greece, Cyprus, Libya, Syria and Iraq. And I again believe that this is an imperial policy, because in the South Caucasus, the Armenians, in fact, are the last obstacle on the way of Turkey to continue its imperial policy in the northeast and southeast. My assessment remained the same. If the Western community does not give an adequate assessment of Turkey's actions, then in the near future they can wait for Turkey to appear near Vienna, "the prime minister stressed.
As for the expectations from the EU, given that some countries are blocking the introduction of sanctions against Turkey, Pashinyan noted: `` We rather pin our hopes on those countries that are our allies and which have allied obligations to Armenia, and we have obligations to them. But I believe that the European Union should not do something for us, this is its business. I have to think about the security of Yerevan, Armenia and the Armenian people, the security of Vienna is not part of my work, but if this happens, one should not say that we did not warn them. There is a war going on in Europe that began long ago. And this continues every day. If you do not notice this war, if, say, artillery is not working there, this does not mean that the war has not begun. This war is on. There are forces that think the following: Europe has lived in prosperity for about 60 years, and this prosperity does not allow us to notice the war that is going on in Europe today. Since, until the bombs go off in the courtyards, in the houses, the successful person tends to be guided by more desirable logic, this opens up a very wide field for many forces>. The prime minister gave an example to his words. He gave an example from the events that took place in France.
When asked if the war could somehow be prevented, given that it began after Pashinyan's power was established in Armenia, the latter noted that the situation has practically not changed since 2011.
What else could I have done to prevent this war? I could not defend the interests of Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia, I could concede. But could this have prevented the war? According to this logic, no. Because at the lowest point of this concession, Azerbaijan should have demanded more. I recently drew a parallel between the Munich Agreement and our situation, with the situation before the start of World War II. The European powers thought that when Czechoslovakia surrendered to Hitler, they would satisfy his appetite - there would be no war. And what happened as a result: Hitler swallowed Czechoslovakia. And there is another saying when they say that "appetite comes with eating". Yes, if the Czech Republic had not yielded to European leaders, if the war had started, the journalists would have gathered and said: "What did you do wrong? You haven't given up the Czech Republic. And they would say yes, they should have been more flexible. They were flexible, but what did it actually do? We do not intend to give up "Czechoslovakia" to anyone, the prime minister stressed.
As for the possibility of Moscow's interference, the head of the Cabinet of Ministers said that the issue of Russian interference can be viewed in different ways. There is Russia, which is the co-chairing country of the OSCE Minsk Group, and there is Russia, which is Armenia's strategic partner. Moscow is the co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, is a mediator, it must act in the logic of balancing, which is understandable. And I said that I was in favor of the deployment of Russian peacekeepers in the conflict zone. But the problem is that the deployment of Russian peacekeepers in the conflict zone should be acceptable to all parties to the conflict. In fact, this is acceptable for Armenia and for Karabakh, it can happen in the event, as stated by the Russian colleagues, if Azerbaijan is also "for". In general, any peacekeeper can be involved with the consent of the parties. As for Moscow as a strategic partner of Armenia, our Russian colleagues stated that in the event of a real threat to the territorial integrity of Armenia, they will fulfill their allied obligations, including military ones, "he noted, stressing that, according to our position, the deployment of Russian peacekeepers is optimal.
As for the shelling of Ganja, the prime minister stressed that the question arises as to why Ganja is being shelled. , Pashinyan asked. He also noted that the Nagorno-Karabakh Defense Army had military targets in Ganja and was hitting military targets. Perhaps these military facilities also affected civilian infrastructure. "But there is definitely no military facility in the St. Ghazanchetsots church in Shushi," the head of the cabinet. As for Armenia's expectations from Tehran, the prime minister noted that Iran is our neighbor and friendly country. "During this time, I had a telephone conversation with the President of Iran, our Foreign Minister held consultations with the Iranian Foreign Minister, and our other state bodies cooperate in analyzing and assessing the situation. We have a common border, our border guards are cooperating, "Pashinyan said.
When asked what the prime minister wants to say to the whole world, he stressed: "I would like to say the following, unfortunately, since the moment of , it was somewhere in the 2000s, the world press began to present the problem of Nagorno-Karabakh as a territorial dispute between Armenia and Azerbaijan. In fact, the Nagorno-Karabakh issue has nothing to do with a territorial dispute. Meanwhile, the Karabakh movement, which began 10 or 12 years earlier, was considered a prerequisite for the fall of the Berlin Wall. Because the Karabakh movement began as an expression of the democratization of the Soviet Union. The Armenians of the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region, who, as always, made up 80 percent of the region's population, decided to try to defend their rights in the context of the democratization of the Soviet Union when Mikhail Gorbachev was democratizing and rebuilding the Soviet Union. And what right was violated? At the beginning of the 20th century, when the Soviet Union was forming, the South Caucasus was part of the Soviet Union, republics were formed. And in 1988, the Supreme Council of the Nagorno- Karabakh Autonomous Region decided to start an absolutely peaceful process in order to correct the current situation when they were part of Azerbaijan. To which the Soviet Union and Azerbaijan responded with force, in particular, organizing the massacre of Armenians in the cities of Sumgait, Baku, and then in the immediate vicinity of Nagorno-Karabakh. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Azerbaijan declared independence from the Soviet Union.
And according to the rules of the Soviet Union, if the republic begins the process of independence from the Soviet Union, its regions, including the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region, can decide on their status. And the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region also decided to become independent. And as Soviet Azerbaijan became independent from the Soviet Union, so the Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Region became independent from Soviet Azerbaijan.
And yes, they do say that the international community did not recognize this independence. The struggle of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh is to recognize this right.
Nagorno-Karabakh has actually become the front line of the anti-terrorist war. And we think that the formula "secession for the sake of salvation" should be applied to Nagorno-Karabakh. Because Nagorno- Karabakh within Azerbaijan means ethnic cleansing, genocide of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh. As far as I know, you were in Karabakh, saw a rocket attack. Can anyone explain why Stepanakert is being shelled? For one simple reason that people would refuse to live there. This is a very important formula for ethnic cleansing and genocide. And our main idea is that there should be a "separation for the sake of salvation," Pashinyan concluded.