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 Friday, February 9 2024 13:16
Marianna Mkrtchyan

Armenia and Azerbaijan: elusive peace 

Armenia and Azerbaijan: elusive peace 

ArmInfo. In December 2023, it would seem that there were all the prerequisites for ending the  conflict, which became one of the triggers for the collapse of the USSR, and then the geopolitical destabilization of the Caucasus region.

However, the New Year celebrations passed, and the numerous optimistic forecasts and statements did not translate into quality, reads an article for the Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC)  authored by Russian political scientist Sergey Markedonov. 

The political scientist recalled that the assistant to the President  of Azerbaijan, head of the department of the presidential  administration for foreign policy, Hikmet Hajiyev, stated on January  4, 2024 that there was significant progress between the parties on  the text of the peace agreement, but "several unresolved issues"  remained. Notorious uncertainty again!

"This is not the first time such a situation has arisen. Let us  remember how even "before historical materialism" under the old  status quo, the mediators liked to say: all issues have been  resolved, except for a few, but among them was the status of  Nagorno-Karabakh, the issue of the return of refugees and the de-  occupation of seven regions "Today, all the above-mentioned problems  are not politically relevant. But a new list has been updated -  enclaves/exlaves, a "corridor" or "passage", a peace treaty. And with  this agenda, everything is not so simple either," the expert noted.  According to Markedonov, in the new conditions, Azerbaijan is  striving for a chamber format of settlement (a bilateral format of  negotiations, if not with the complete exclusion of mediators, then  with their minimal intervention). Yerevan is interested in the  opposite - in external guarantees.

"True, against the background of cooling with Moscow, Pashinyan's  team is not very successful in trying to provide them by increasing  cooperation with Western partners.

It is extremely important for Baku to block opportunities for  national-territorial revenge once and for all.  Hence the set of  Azerbaijani demands, affecting not only issues of borders and  security, but also the state- political identity of post-Soviet  Armenia. The Armenian leadership faces a difficult dilemma. She has  to de facto dismantle the "third republic" that arose on the basis of  "miatsuma [unification]".

And here, haste is simply dangerous for Pashinyan and Co., primarily  for internal political reasons. And in this context, "delay" is not  the worst option for him. But Azerbaijan, it seems, is not very ready  to listen to these arguments, the geopolitical drive has been caught,  and there is a risk of losing momentum," the expert concludes.   

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