Karabakh issue dominated the internatal political agenda during the past week.
South Caucasus remains involved in the international processes, said MP Artak Zakaryan, member of the Republican Party of Armenia. “In terms of security, the Armenians-Russian agreements are important to maintain balance in the region and protect Armenia from outside threats. It’s not a secret that Azerbaijan presents the main threat for regional security.”
Armenian expert Yervand Bozoyan doesn’t view the protocol on extension of the terms of Russian military base deployment in Armenia as a great agreement. “A similar agreement was signed earlier between Turkey and Azerbaijan. What Armenia should do is to pin hopes on its army, which is stronger than Azerbaijani,” he said. As to possible adoption of a resolution on Nagorno Karabakh and Armenia submitted to the UN General Assembly by Azerbaijan, he said it will not be a tragedy. “The UN has adopted about 200 resolutions on Israel. Anyway, this country is developing and flourishing. The resolution on Nagorno Karabakh will certainly be backed by members of the Organization of Islamic Conference but the OSCE Minsk Group countries will be more constructive,” Bozoyan said. He also emphasized that in case of resumption of hostilities Armenia should immediately recognize independence of NKR. “This will give us a legal possibility to interfere,” he said.
> Nagorno-Karabakh Map
RA Defense Minister Seyran Ohanyan stated that the extension of Russian military base deployment terms is important for Armenia. “Protocol 5 cements Armenian-Russian military and political union, what allows developing the army, strengthening security and resist challenges. We will jointly implement all provisions of the protocol but I would like to mention that Armenia will host no more than one Russian base,” the Minister emphasized.
The resolution on Nagorno Karabakh the Azerbaijani delegation is expected to submit to the UN General Assembly on September 9, 2010 will be supported by several dozens of countries will as a token of solidarity with Baku, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan said in Stepanakert, NKR. “First of all, these will be members of the Organization of Islamic Conference. However, all countries interested in peaceful settlement of the conflict will vote against, as resolutions of the kind can’t but hamper the peace process,” he said. According to President Sargsyan, Azerbaijan is going to commit another blunder and Armenia should make use of it. “Our goal is to prove that Artsakh can never be a part of Azerbaijan. It’s an independent developing state and we should continue our activity to reach final success,” he said.
Representative of ARF Dashnaktsutyun supreme body, Armen Rustamyan, said that ARFD urged its offices worldwide to double efforts to prevent adoption of Azerbaijan’s resolution on Karabakh in the UN General Assembly. “Many countries supports such resolutions proceeding from their own interests. To counterbalance Azerbaijan’s attempts to launch a process parallel to the ongoing one, Armenia should initiate a campaign for international recognition of Artsakh and form a tandem with this republic,” he said. As to extension of terms of the Russian military base deployment in Armenia, he noted that “ARFD supports agreements aimed to strengthen Armenia’s security, somehow endangered by the frustrated dialogue with Turkey.”
Azerbaijan showed its real worth once again, Armenian Defense Minister Seyran Ohanyan said when commenting on regular attempt of Azeri armed forces to penetrate in the NKR territory nearby Upper Chaylu settlement. “Azerbaijan’s another sortie was prevented on August 31 night. After our border guards took retaliatory measures, the subversives escaped, suffering losses. However, in a habit of spreading misinformation, Baku reported 2 Armenian soldiers killed and 1 injured. Actually, it was quite the contrary. Armenian army always keeps alert and any attack is repelled,” he said.
Submission of a resolution of Karabakh conflict to the UN General Assembly is a destructive move which can badly damage the negotiation process, Armenia’s Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian said. “Majority of the UN member countries believe that such issues should not be raised in the General Assembly. In 2008, the resolution initiated by Azerbaijan was supported by 39 (majority of them being members of the Organization of Islamic Conference) out of 192 UN member countries. No member of the UN Security Council voted ‘for’ while the OSCE Minsk Group co-chair countries voted ‘against’. Baku is abusing the Islamic solidarity. It’s attempts to attach a religious coloring to Karabakh conflict are dangerous,” he said.
The resolution on Karabakh submitted to the UN General Assembly by Azerbaijan represents no danger for Armenia, according to expert Vladimir Vardanyan. “The resolution, even if adopted, will be not-binding. It’s just a document with a number of drawbacks. Moreover, Azerbaijan sites documents which clearly indicate the right of nations to self-determination,” he said. Asked whether Azerbaijan can push the resolution into the UN Security Council, taking the advantage of Turkey’s chairmanship, he remarked the SC can’t consider the document as it’s the OSCE Minsk Group dealing with the conflict settlement.
Viewing discussion of its legislative initiative on recognition of NKR’s independence as a top priority, Heritage parliamentary group sent its bill to Chairman of the RA National Assembly Hovik Abrahamyan. The first provision of the bill reads that “Armenia recognizes independence of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic.” According to relevant articles of the RA NA regulations, the bill will be included in the parliament session agenda without voting and is subject to extraordinary discussion on October 5.
Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan congratulated the people of Artsakh Republic on Independence Day. “Independence of Artsakh is one of the greatest achievements of our nation. We know the price of independence. Thousands of Armenian sons gave their lives for freedom. We will always remember them. Today, Artsakh is a firm state system with an efficient defense army. Its internal stability and comprehensive development make no doubt regarding the republic’s free and prosperous future… Peaceful resolution of Karabakh problem can only be achieved through international recognition of independence of Artsakh Republic… I wish you peace, glory and new victories,” President Sargsyan stated.