ArmInfo. The situation in which the Armenians of Karabakh are protected from ethnic cleansing by only 2,000 Russian peacekeepers and, of course, the military power of Russia behind them is not in the interests of either these people, or Armenia, or Russia itself. Nikolai Silaev, a leading researcher at the Institute of International Studies of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO) of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, expressed a similar opinion at the Geopolitical Session "Armenia and Russia: the Imperative of a New Strategy" being held at the Russian-Armenian University in Yerevan.
"In this light, the path to peace proposed by Russia by unblocking all communications in the region is practically uncontested. I understand that this sounds utopian, but this is a chance at least to get on the path to building trust and prevent further killing of people. All this, ultimately, strengthens the security guarantees of both Armenia and the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh, "he stressed.
In Silaev's opinion, the location of the "red lines" for Russia in the Karabakh issue and elsewhere, unfortunately, remains uncertain. And if these lines are drawn, they are drawn with blood. "Let's face it, the red lines for Russia are a situation in which Russia openly enters the war. And this uncertainty in the place of their implementation exists, including for Moscow. Unfortunately, in the foreseeable future we are all: Russians, Armenians, Turks, the Americans will be in a state of uncertainty about the red lines. That is why it is so important to come up with solutions that would help establish a lasting peace in the region," the Russian expert emphasized.
Commenting on the results of the 44-day war for Russia, Silaev noted that in the Russian Federation itself they were assessed in different ways - from triumphant to very pessimistic. Optimists mentioned the buildup of the Russian presence in the South Caucasus, pessimists about the lost role of the leading power in the region by Russia and the concession of this role to Turkey. In his opinion, both opinions are not entirely correct, and the truth, as always, is in the middle.
"It is obvious that the situation has changed significantly, and not in favor of the Russian Federation. The right to force was fulfilled - something that all three OSCE Minsk Group co-chairing countries opposed for decades and the parties to the conflict themselves as well. The result was attempts to settle the conflict, not a solution, since the Karabakh conflict is undoubtedly not settled. At the same time, Russia's ally was defeated in this war. Turkey's ally was victorious. In the international community, all this is perceived and will be perceived in this way, and this is an obvious blow to the status and prestige of the Russian Federation. Is this a disaster for Moscow? In my opinion, no," he stressed.
Silaev's last thesis is conditioned by the even greater involvement of the Russian Federation in the settlement of the Karabakh conflict than was observed before the war. And with the deployment of Russian peacekeepers in Artsakh following the war, Russian mediation only intensified. In this light, the expert also recalled that during the deployment of the peacekeeping situation, Russia suffered losses, not the United States or France.
"All this means that for the Russian Federation the state consistency and the military power of Armenia are of even greater importance today than before the war. Russia needs a strong Armenia, on which we can rely, and which will be able to fulfill its allied functions and defend itself to some extent. And we proceed from the premise that this alliance should be long-term. Military reconstruction is already taking place with the help of Russia. But it is necessary to strengthen the economy, prevent the outflow of the population. And in the coming years, the Armenian-Russian alliance will deal with all these tasks. Armenia should maintain balance with neighboring countries. And this balance is not exhausted by the military-political component, " summed up Silaev.