Armenia must announce the urgent withdrawal schedule from the rest of lands - Expert - EXCLUSIVE | Eurasia Diary - ednews.net

30 November, Monday


Armenia must announce the urgent withdrawal schedule from the rest of lands - Expert - EXCLUSIVE

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Armenia's expectations for foreign support remained fruitless. On the one hand, Putin, who is in close dialogue with Erdogan, does not want to get involved in the war. On the other hand, the Nagorno-Karabakh issue is not a priority for the USA, which is dealing with the elections. Pashinyan, who has lost hope of foreign support, has only to withdraw. These were told to Eurasia Diary by Kojaeli University faculty member Prof. Dr. Irfan Kaya Ulger in his exclusive interview. Prof. Dr. I.K.Ulger also answered the questions about the international dimensions of the Nagorno-Karabakh issue.
 
Karabakh war has entered into its fifth week and the exhausted Armenia military forces incapably retreat with many losses. However, there is still a power behind Armenians who forces them to resist until the last body is killed in their criminal war against Azerbaijan. What main actors may have been involved to insist Armenia to take such stupid decisions?
 
The inequality between Armenia and Azerbaijan in terms of the composition of national power has widened further. Since 1991, Azerbaijan has experienced a strong capital and economic growth as a result of the supply of natural resources such as oil and natural gas to international markets. Despite some large expenses from the income, there is still enrichment for the average citizen compared to the past. This situation naturally reflected on the defence industry. Azerbaijan today has modernized its defence industry supplying new weapons and ammunitions from Russia, Turkey and elsewhere. As regards Armenia, the country has gone back in terms of economy and national power since 1991. Hundreds of thousands of Armenians left the country due to economic difficulties and went to Russia and western countries. Turkish government announced many Armenians working illegally in Turkey. In the initial years, Armenia was generously supported by Russia. However, since the elections in 2018, Putin has a more distant attitude towards the Nikol Pashinyan administration, which mainly collaborates with the west.
All these negativities cause Armenia to act irrationally in this war. On the one hand, force is being used against the civilian population in violation of the Geneva conventions of the law of war, on the other hand, the Armenian forces, which have collapsed in morale, are forced to stay on the battlefront. If the Armenian administration were rational, it would have announced the withdrawal schedule from the occupied territories in the early 1990s in order to avoid loss of life during the ceasefire negotiations. We see that all this is not done. What has been done is, on the one hand, demanding help from Putin, on the other hand, making Azerbaijan to respond to attacks from Armenian territories, which is outside of Nagorno-Karabakh. Thus, they think that Putin will help them in accordance with the Collective Security Agreement. However, Putin showed in his statement yesterday that he had no such intention. Despite all this, there is nothing that can be rationally explained that the Armenian administration does not back down. I think they act out of instinct and historical grudge.
 
All ammunitions are about to drain in the Armenian army. There is an alarm for raising the white flag. What scenario is expecting Pashinyan in front of those who managed him such as supplied weapons, tried to manipulate by calling ceasefires and supporting them on the media outlets with biased and fake information? 
 
On the battlefield, Armenian forces are at an extremely disadvantage. This can be observed both in terms of morale and military vehicles and ammunition. In this case, Pashinyan resorts to fake news and propaganda to keep the soldiers at the battlefront. At this point, the support of the diaspora, the demonstrations of Armenians in European countries and the statements of some European administrators are reflected to the public in an exaggerated manner by the Armenian media. At the end of this conflict, I think the pro-Western Nikol Pashinyan will be overthrown. In fact, Putin does not like the Prime Minister of Armenia very much and seems to be pleased with his change.
While Armenia is trying to distract the domestic public opinion with fake news and propaganda, on the other hand, it is awaiting the intervention of great powers, especially Russia.
 
Why do Armenia worry much more for its borders than it lost Karabakh almost within in a month? It is clear that Azerbaijan, however, aims to fight for no more than liberating its occupied territories.
 
The Azerbaijani administration declared its war goal as liberating the territories occupied by the Armenians in the first half of the 1990s. President Aliyev drew on this particular point, especially in the interviews he gave to the foreign press. He even emphasized that the largest possible autonomy would be provided to the Nagorno-Karabakh region, if a concession was made to remain it within Azerbaijan. Despite this, we see that Armenia has recently been in a state of concern regarding its territories outside of Nagorno-Karabakh. The aim of this approach may be to direct the western support to the region. Seeing that its expectations from Russia are not met, Armenia wants even now, to mobilize western states. He is hopeful for them to step in and at least to hold a corridor between Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia, and in this way a status quo to be formed.
 
There is a common saying among politicians: - There is a chaos in what matter US meddle. The US called ceasefire and on the other hand the PKK terror attack took place in Hatay, Turkey. Is it possible that the United States, which has been off the stage for a long time, is meddling in Karabakh issue by distracting Turkey with such games? 
 
There is a strong Armenian lobby in the USA. They are also putting pressure on management. However, we should not expect the US to focus on Nagorno-Karabakh or any other issue these days. There are elections in the first place which supposed to take place in a few days. Secondly, even outside election time, there is confusion in decision making in the USA. The President's preference is different; the Foreign Ministry says that the Ministry of Defense follows another traditional policy. There are also powerful groups such as WASP (Wasp Anglo-Saxon Protestant), such as the Jews who direct the system in this country. In the short term, I do not believe that the US will organize and take a decisive stance on any issue other than Israeli interests, which they are extremely sensitive to. Besides, the USA also has very close relations with Azerbaijan. BTC has been implemented, among other things, with US support. At this stage, the US initiative in favour of Armenia is not suitable for the conjuncture and does not coincide with its own national interests.
 
What made Putin back down on the Karabakh issue after the last telephone conversation between Tayyib Erdogan and Putin?
 
From time to time, Turkey's relations with NATO and the EU began to experience stress and tension. Along the Arab Spring, the exclusion of Turkey from the west almost opened the door to closer cooperation with Russia. Today Turkey's full membership relations with the EU were frozen. As a result of this, the United States declined to provide its Patriot missiles as well as removing Turkey from the F-35 programme. So, all these conditions made Turkey to observe the balance in the east and the west. In this context the Turkish-Russian relations is also concerned. However, the two countries are in conflict on many issues, such as big questions in Ukraine, Syria and Libya. Putin's neutral attitude in contrast of which Armenia expected to be for their favour on the Nagorno-Karabakh issue, especially on the battlefield, is a result of dialogue with Turkey. Of course there is also a concern that Putin will not lose his influence over Azerbaijan. But I think Turkey has convinced Putin on the Nagorno-Karabakh issue. Putin will remain silent until all of Armenian occupied territories of Azerbaijan in the early 1990s are liberated. In the next stage, the status of Nagorno-Karabakh will be on agenda. Foreign Minister Lavrov once talked about deploying Russian peacekeepers in Nagorno-Karabakh. At this stage, they do not mention this yet. Turkey, in its part, will strongly be engaged in the negotiation process after full liberation of the occupied territories. The dialogue between Putin and Erdogan gives signs of this.
 
Interviewed by Elnur Enveroglu

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