Armenia - Azerbaijan, far from the world

Even before the meeting, which was held between the presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia with the mediation of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Medvedev 24 June 2011, in Kazan, an unprecedented excitement arose in the international press about this. Many of the world's leading media raised the topic of the Karabakh conflict. It seemed that the world community was waiting for results in connection with the meeting in Kazan. It was even considered possible that during the meeting the opposing sides would sign a bilateral framework agreement on Basic Theses, consisting of 14 points.

Armenia - Azerbaijan, far from the world
Russian Foreign Ministry said that "the meeting is to play a decisive role in resolving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict."

The official comments of Yerevan and Baku, which followed literally in the evening of June 24 and 25, boiled down to the traditional exchange of reproaches, although there were also judgments suitable for understanding the causes of the Kazan failure. According to the published statement of the Foreign Ministry of Armenia, the negotiation process is hampered by the intransigence of the representatives of Azerbaijan, who presented about a dozen completely unacceptable changes and reservations to the negotiable plan. According to the Armenian side, this was done for the sole purpose - by any means to prevent any progress in the Karabakh settlement. At the same time, in Baku they consider that in Yerevan they demand a lot of concessions and must be content with the fact that the representatives of Azerbaijan continue the negotiations without resorting to the use of military force. As an obvious proof of the growing power of the army 26 June a grand military parade was held in Baku.

Many Baku residents are confident that in the event of a resumption of hostilities over Nagorno-Karabakh, their state will be able to win back all the occupied lands from Armenia. According to Interfax-Azerbaijan, this is indicated by the results of a survey conducted by the Ray Monitoring Center (Judgment). To the question whether Azerbaijan will be able to solve the long-standing problem of Karabakh by military means, if necessary, 58% answered “yes”; 22% - “rather yes than not”; 6% - “no”, 4% - “rather no, than yes”; 10% found it difficult to answer. At the same time, speaking about how to solve the Karabakh problem, 63% of respondents chose negotiations, and 33% chose the military option.

The survey also revealed a significant social interest in the military parade, which was held on June 26 in Baku in connection with the Day of the Armed Forces and the 20 anniversary of the state independence of Azerbaijan. Almost all respondents (94%) know for sure about this event or monitored the broadcast on TV, 3% - are familiar with the event, the rest were the first to hear about the parade from the words of interviewers, or found it difficult to answer. As the survey showed, the Baku residents took this action very positively: 88% supported it, 8% reacted neutrally and without interest, and 4% found it difficult to answer or were indifferent to the military parade.

Approximately all respondents (92%) approvingly assessed the creation of the state defense industry. Respondents were asked to give an answer to the following question: “If someone from your family was drafted into the army, what would you choose: that he serve in the army or try to avoid it by any means?”. And 84% of Baku residents stated that they would like their relative to be called up for active military service. We were at a loss with the final answer of 8%, and about the same number admitted that they would like to avoid using any means of military conscription for their own children. A sabotage of social judgment was held in Baku on June 26-28.

EU President Herman Van Rompuy pointed out that "now is the time to make additional efforts to reach a final agreement on basic theses." French President Nicolas Sarkozy in a telegram sent to President Serzh Sargsyan stressed that the time had come to legitimize the Basic Theses. US President Barack Obama, who, during telephone conversations with the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan, called on them to “finalize and support the Basic Theses”, added fuel to the already blazing fire.

The war in Nagorno-Karabakh threatens the interests of NATO

“We are all disappointed that during the meeting of the presidents of Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russia in Kazan we didn’t achieve significant progress in the Karabakh settlement issue,” special representative of the NATO Secretary General in the Caucasus and the Central Asian republics James Appathurai said in an interview to ArmInfo news agency.

In his words, the Kazan meeting was an excellent opportunity for progress. “It's a shame that this did not happen,” Appathurai noted, adding that only diplomacy is the only way to progress. As he noted, NATO has a clear position on this issue - contention cannot have a military solution as an exit; the use of force will lead to the loss of significant military potential of each of the parties, "as well as to the mandatory and inevitable collapse of the political and economic components of the state."

On the eve of the meeting in Kazan, the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan gave an interview to the international television company Euronews. During the interview, Ilham Aliyev said that Nagorno-Karabakh is the territory recognized by the international community of Azerbaijan, and the maximum that its state agrees to is the granting of the widest autonomy to Nagorno-Karabakh. At the same time, Serzh Sargsyan, the President of Armenia, once again made it clear that Azerbaijan is obliged to recognize the right of the people of Nagorno-Karabakh to self-determination.

James Appathurai did not want to comment in his interview on the statement made by the President of Azerbaijan on the military advantage of Baku over Yerevan, which he expressed after the Kazan talks, during a military parade in the capital of Azerbaijan. "I don’t want to comment on the popular statements of the leaders of any of the 2-s countries, however, what we really need now is to reduce tensions at the level of contact and the intensity of attention to seeking a diplomatic and mutually acceptable political solution," he said.

As Appaturai noted, NATO adheres to the doctrine according to which there will be no winners in the military resolution of the Karabakh conflict. "We believe that when using military force, both parties to the conflict will lose and, first of all, ordinary citizens of 2 countries will lose out because they will suffer losses economically. In addition, this scenario will nullify the process achieved in recent years Thus, diplomacy is an exceptional way for us, which can lead to a finely balanced and mutually acceptable solution, "the NATO Secretary General’s Special Representative explained.

It is also necessary to pay attention to the following fact: from the mediators of the negotiations, the West assumed the role of a distant observer and even the encouraging party, meanwhile, Russia assumed the role of a direct organizer of the negotiations and thereby responsible for their results. It can be said that the negotiators did not make an equal contribution to make the meeting “borderline”; they also played various roles in organizing the meeting.

It is known that one of the Madrid theses concerns the final rank of Nagorno-Karabakh. The exclusive document, which contains the Madrid theses, in a statement adopted by the heads of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chair countries during the summit in the Spanish Aquila, only states that in the near future the final legal rank of the NC will be determined by free expressions of will: “Nagorno-Karabakh through a legally binding expression of will”.

Note that the result recorded in Kazan fully fits into the framework of the above logic: both parties stated that there is agreement on minor issues and there is a desire to continue diplomatic negotiations to agree on unresolved issues. It must be stated that, it is true, everyone, both the mediators and the parties to the multi-year conflict, noted that their expectations, unfortunately, were not fulfilled, but at the same time they stated that it was necessary to continue the negotiations. From the fact that the important document lying on the negotiating table of the party or one of the parties did not accept because of the firm disagreement, it means that we should expect new proposals and a new round of activity of intermediaries.

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