"Azerbaijani superiority makes Tehran envious"
    Pundits comment on Iran's recent provocation

    INTERVIEWS  13 March 2023 - 16:07

    Samir Ibrahimov

    As it was reported earlier, on March 11, the Iranian Air Force aircraft flew from 09:44 to 10:26 along the Azerbaijani-Iranian state border. It went 3-5 km from the state border along the Zangilan region towards the Bilasuvar region of Azerbaijan and back. In some places, it flew over the state border. On the same day, Iranian Ambassador to Azerbaijan Seyed Abbas Mousavi was summoned to the Azerbaijani Ministry of Foreign Affairs, where he was handed a corresponding note of protest.

    Azerbaijan has seen a lot from Iran in recent years. A peak of tension was the invasion of Azerbaijani territory by Iranian troops during the 44-day war and the armed attack on Azerbaijan's embassy in Tehran in January this year. Regarding the attack on the diplomatic mission, the Iranian side has so far failed to provide at least some plausible explanation as to how this was possible. The situation is quite tense, but Iranian authorities keep on carrying out military provocations on the border with our country. What for and why? What objectives could Iran's ruling circles pursue with regard to Azerbaijan?

    Renowned foreign analysts have shared their thoughts on the matter with Caliber.Az.

    In the opinion of Doctor of Military Sciences and Political Science Vakhtang Maisaya, Georgia, Tehran provokes strange and dangerous tendencies through its actions.

    "I think Iran wants to demonstrate its strength. Against the worsening of its confrontation with Tel Aviv, Tehran fears that Azerbaijan may be involved in potential hostilities between Israel and Iran that are associated with the creation of a nuclear bomb by the Iranian side.

    More so, for some reason, the Iranian leadership perceives the recent meeting in Baku between Israeli intelligence minister Gila Gamliel and Azerbaijani President as a military threat to itself. Although it is not so, it is worth recalling that the first Azerbaijani ambassador to Israel said bluntly the other day that in case of hostilities against Iran, Azerbaijan would never allow its territory to be used by either of the warring sides. And this is an absolutely correct position.

    I think there is a second point here as well. Iran wants to demonstrate that it is some kind of regional hegemon in the South Caucasus. That is why it is trying to show the presence of its military flag, so to speak.

    The third factor is that the US is now becoming almost the main mediator in the settlement of Armenian-Azerbaijani relations. I think the presence of the USA and its involvement in regional affairs makes Iran somehow reformat its geopolitical aspirations, and it believes that by demonstrating its military forces, it can scare someone. I do not know what Tehran is counting on here, if not so long ago the Armed Forces of Azerbaijan have already shown their high defense capability, and excellent combat training. That is, they are capable of responding appropriately to any hypothetical military provocation by Iran," the Georgian expert believes.

    Israeli publicist Avigdor Eskin (Jerusalem) believes that Azerbaijan is an object of endless irritation for Iran.

    "Iran's northern neighbour is a state that maintains harmony between all segments of the population. The standard of living in Azerbaijan is much higher. Add to this the ability to establish relations with all countries of the world, and we get a holistic picture of Azerbaijani superiority, which makes Tehran envious," he says.

    There are more than twenty million Azerbaijanis living in northern Iran. These people are deprived of the right to develop their culture in their own language and even to give their children Azeri names, Eskin noted.

    "It is no coincidence that demonstrations against the regime are particularly prominent in these regions.

    Throughout the years of independent existence, Azerbaijan has sought good neighbourly relations with Iran. But lately, an aggressive line has been taking over in Tehran, which includes provocations and is marked by insulting and defiant actions. Iran is testing the extent of Azerbaijan's tolerance.

    Tehran clearly does not take into account the fact that Baku has reliable partners and that Azerbaijan's own military capabilities in some areas are more powerful than Iran's," Eskin concluded.


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