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SUPPLIANT AZERBAIJAN

Vahram ATANESYAN

 

It turns out that Azerbaijan, which is constantly dissatisfied with the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs, is concerned that not only the UN Secretary General but also the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy is interested in the recent tensions on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border.

It is already clear what political goal Ilham Aliyev was pursuing by ordering the attack on the Armenian positions and the shelling of the peaceful settlements. It should have been the subject of Russian-Turkish discussions on Nagorno-Karabakh. It is no coincidence that a telephone conversation between Erdoghan and Putin took place on the initiative of the Turkish side on July 13, but was followed by a statement from the Russian Foreign Ministry, which stressed the importance of balanced behavior of the OSCE Minsk Group member states. Russia made it clear that Turkey is destructive and that Moscow will not hold separate talks with Ankara.

Further developments, however, revealed the concerns of the Russian side. Foreign Minister Lavrov stated that the talks on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict should be continued on the basis of earlier developments. It is difficult to say whether Moscow has received any signals in another direction.

One thing is obvious. Azerbaijan is making diplomatic efforts to prevent a change in the concept and, in particular, the format of the talks. To achieve this goal, Baku has resumed bowing to Moscow. In this regard, Aliyev's propaganda is supported by a respectable group of Russian experts, which generates the idea of a "threat of slaughter" for Armenia. Some Russian celebrities of Armennian nationality are also taking certain steps in that direction. Perhaps the biggest danger of this propaganda campaign is the aim to divide the Armenian Diaspora. The interests of Azerbaijan and Russia coincide in this issue, but the situation is such that at the present stage Baku is in a begging position.

The telephone conversation between the Foreign Ministers of Turkey and Russia took place. There may be surprises ahead.