The war in Ukraine has changed the situation around the world: what is happening in Nagorno-Karabakh
The war in Ukraine has changed the situation around the world: what is happening in Nagorno-Karabakh/Getty Images
By going on the offensive these days in Nagorno-Karabakh, Azerbaijan took advantage of the weakening of Russia and embarked on the path of returning this region under its full control. Tension in the South Caucasus is clearly not in the hands of Moscow, which now risks losing a significant part of its influence there.
The reason for the escalation by the military of Azerbaijan, the interest of Turkey, and the impact of the resumption of hostilities in Karabakh on the position of Russia – in an exclusive interview with the website of Channel 24, was told by international political scientist Yuri Oleinik.
About the actions of Azerbaijan
< p>Yuri, did Azerbaijan successfully take advantage of the absence of Russian peacekeepers?
First of all, it should be understood that the events that are taking place in Ukraine are tectonically changing the entire geopolitical situation in the world. First of all, in our region.
Now we are witnessing an act of a reasonable country that has profitably used the window of opportunity in its favor.
Although Aliyev and Putin signed a Joint Declaration on military assistance in Moscow on February 22, everything changed very quickly not in favor of the Kremlin. Therefore, just a few weeks later, Baku is already threatening Moscow that it will terminate the agreement if the latter does not comply with the agreement concluded last January.
Yuri Oleinik, international political scientist/Photo from the author's archive
To do these events that we are now witnessing have certain legal grounds?
The legal grounds are that when there was a truce signed by the parties in January last year, it was guaranteed that 4 regions that had not been part of the Karabakh Autonomy since Soviet times would be returned to Azerbaijan.
In addition, a transit route to Nakhchevan was agreed from the Zangezur corridor. In addition, the Russian peacekeepers were supposed to take the place of the Armenian forces in that part of the corridor, which, by the time the agreement was signed, was controlled by Armenia. At the same time, the Russians were supposed to become observers of traffic safety along the corridor.
However, this was not done. The Armenian forces were not withdrawn, there were more Russian forces in that sector than the parties had previously agreed, the Azerbaijanis were not allowed through the Zangezur corridor.
Therefore, Baku had every right to conduct offensive operations. Moreover, the territory where Karabakh is now located belongs to Azerbaijan in accordance with international law.
On the interests of Turkey
And what exactly is the Turkish interest here?
Last year this war was only put on pause. Azerbaijan could not take what it wanted. Revanchist sentiments are strong in Armenia, despite the lack of resources to regain control over the lost territories. I think the Azerbaijanis are determined to go all the way with the support of Turkey, again.
Ankara, in turn, will get Russia ousted from the South Caucasus region.
Did the Russian peacekeepers really, shortly before the next escalation, the parties asked to move away from their positions previously taken?
Yes, they did ask. As you can see, Azerbaijan did not pay the slightest attention to this, instead sending Putin after the Russian ship. But even if the Russians wanted to do something, they simply physically could not. At that time, they were not in the resource, because the Kremlin transferred almost its entire contingent to Ukraine.
On the consequences for Armenia
How will this situation affect Armenia?
Yerevan now has a choice: either start amid escalation normalization of relations with the West, or continue to rely on Russia in vain.
The first option involves the normalization of relations with other neighbors. Including with Turkey. In fact, now Pashinyan has only one ally – this is Iran. The choice of the path to normalize relations will help improve the international image of the state and minimize foreign policy risks.
Of course, Karabakh will have to be given to Azerbaijan. At best, there will be something like autonomy. In short, the pro-Russian policy will only bring Armenia international isolation and collapse in the future. Whereas a change in course to a more pro-Western one will allow the state to survive and develop as it should.
On the consequences for the Kremlin and the benefits for Ukraine
How the offensive in Karabakh will affect the situation Kremlin?
All this will lead to the collapse of Russian integration projects in Moscow's spheres of influence. Most likely, seeing the weakness of the Russian army, the CSTO will cease to exist.
This will be followed by the EurAsEC. We see the state of the Russian economy now. In general, this plays a positive role for us and will bring the collapse of the newest Russian empire closer.
What other benefits do we have in this story?
Everything that is happening with the Russian army is a clear demonstration of the weakness of the Russian military machine. Even the domestic Russian consumer will soon begin to be disappointed that all the countries of the former socialist bloc, which were under strong Russian influence, are getting rid of the Moscow yoke.
In the end, we will observe the collapse of imperial Russia after the now launched irreversible centrifugal processes in the post-Soviet space will be successfully completed.