"Moscow disengages in every possible way from Pashinyan's unreliable regime" 
    Russian experts for Caliber.Az

    INTERVIEWS  30 August 2022 - 17:35

    Huseyn Safarov

    The Second Karabakh War ended with the signing of the Trilateral Declaration on November 10, 2020. On that day, the president of Azerbaijan and the prime minister of Armenia inked a joint document mediated by Russian President Vladimir Putin. De facto, this can be considered Armenia's surrender. However, Armenia has been stalling the signing of a peace treaty with Azerbaijan for almost two years now.

    In his interview with Caliber.Az political scientist Alexander Shatilov, Dean of Faculty of Sociology and Political Science of Financial University under the Government of Russian Federation, expressed his view on the developments in the region.

    The first thing to which the expert pays attention is a very calm reaction of the Russian leadership to the cleansing of the Lachin district by Azerbaijan, which, in his opinion, is evidence of quite cool relations between Moscow and Yerevan at the moment.

    "Moreover, as pro-Western forces in Armenia seek to demonize Russia (saying it has surrendered Karabakh), the Russian leadership is trying to distance itself as much as possible from the unreliable Pashinyan regime, and indeed from the Armenian track in general. First, the Ukrainian direction is much more important to Moscow, and Yerevan is either unwilling or unable to help. Second, the Armenian elite's active contacts with the US and the EU, often to the detriment of Russian interests, seem to have angered the Kremlin, which has received accusations of "betrayal" from the Armenian side in response to years of military, political and economic support. Third, amid the tense battle over Ukraine between the Russian Federation and the West, it is important for Moscow, even at the cost of certain concessions, to ensure the neutrality of Türkiye and Azerbaijan. So, apparently, at the moment, the relations between Russia and Armenia are in the state of deepening crisis," Shatilov concludes.

    Meanwhile, a meeting between Ilham Aliyev and Nikol Pashinyan has already been announced for August 31 in Brussels, with the participation of European Council President Charles Michel, and the reasonable question arises as to whether Brussels is trying to squeeze Moscow out of the Armenian-Azerbaijani settlement.

    Stanislav Mitrakhovich, an expert of the National Energy Security Fund and researcher at the Financial University under the Russian government, shared his standpoint on this issue with Caliber.Az, expressing a very sceptical attitude towards the EU mediation efforts.

    "I think Moscow lacks the strength for all other areas of diplomatic, military, and economic activity, as it is engaged with the current operation in Ukraine. There is not even enough bureaucracy to do it all, so active mediation on the Armenian-Azerbaijani settlement inevitably falters. Thus, other players, including the EU, are trying to take advantage of the situation. However, this does not mean that the EU will be able to take Russia's place in this matter. There have not yet been examples of the EU successfully resolving international conflicts, and everything it has tried to do has failed. For example, the EU resolved the key issues in the Balkans with the help of NATO. Now all kinds of tasks to deter Russia by force are also carried out through NATO. In other words, there are no examples of the EU doing anything on its own. For example, there are KFOR forces operating in Serbia and Kosovo, but again this is not the EU, but a separate structure that is much closer to NATO. In other words, I don't see the likelihood of the EU effectively pulling something off on its own.

    In addition, I do not think that Baku and Yerevan are on the verge of signing any document. Agreements that would suit everyone are not in sight yet. And this tendency is due to the fact that Russia is now relaxed, so the parties to the conflict are looking for other players to lean on. Meanwhile, the EU is trying to replace Russia as much as possible," Mitrakhovich said.





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