Yerevan
24 / October / 2017

Azerbaijan "Burst": Armenia's Next Step

Yesterday Azerbaijan made a big fuss and called on all the international organizations demanding to condemn the operation of the Armenian forces in the result of which, according to the Azerbaijani side, civilians were killed.

The Armenian forces counterattacked after the Azerbaijanis started a large-scale artillery fire, hitting an Armenian command post. Azerbaijan used the opportunity and made a noise, trying to achieve the solution of specific problems. What problems are they?

Azerbaijan has currently appeared in a situation when its demands are actually ignored, including its right to war. Armenia’s stance is tougher, it has set forth preconditions for starting the negotiations, including ceasefire and investigation mechanisms. Azerbaijan adopted a policy of murder along the entire length of the line of contact after which Armenia started calling stakeholders to use sanctions against Azerbaijan.

Here is a situation when Azerbaijan’s last method left – murder – is used up, and Azerbaijan has appeared in a deadlock. No means can lead the situation to its field of claims.
Yesterday’s provocation has one goal – trying to get out of this standstill and make counter-claims to the Armenian side. However, this does not seem to produce results. The Minsk Group has released a statement which calls on the sides to stop military actions. In its turn, the Russian foreign ministry published an unexpected statement, accusing Azerbaijan of discrimination and violence against its citizens with Armenian surnames.

Most importantly, however, the Armenian foreign ministry responded differently. The spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Tigran Balayan has stated that the Azerbaijani authorities should agree to carry out the agreements achieved in Vienna and Saint Petersburg to avoid further escalation and losses. This may have been the most unexpected part for Azerbaijan which is used to certain “defensiveness” of the Armenian diplomacy. The Armenian foreign ministry has doubled the strike of the armed forces, hinting that Azerbaijan will continue to get disproportionate strikes unless it agrees to the application of mechanisms of restraint. Hence, the action of the Armenian armed forces is reinforced in diplomacy.

Armenia has a serious issue in the process of the Karabakh settlement because in the 1990s the Armenian government signed documents which recognized Azerbaijan’s rights, in fact. Azerbaijan puts forth to the co-chairs this very circumstance, denying everything except “territorial integrity and withdrawal of the Armenian forces”. The objective of the Armenian diplomacy is to change this situation which is complicated. Can Tigran Balayan’s note mean that the foreign ministry is adopting this policy? By the way, Armenia can put forth another precondition – a demand that Azerbaijan withdraw from the positions it occupies in the result of the military actions last April, thus restoring the pre-April status quo?

They need to continue, this is the only way. Any shot by Azerbaijan must work against it, further deepening the standstill. The events of July 4-5 are the beginning of this process.

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