TODAY.AZ / Analytics

Armenia's attempts are doomed to failure

17 December 2009 [11:55] - TODAY.AZ
Leading world powers are forced to consider the position and interests of the Azerbaijani-Turkish tandem for the sake of their own geopolitical interests.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan’s U.S. trip sheds light on numerous issues connected with normalizing Armenian-Turkish relations and resolving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Until then, many Armenians claimed Ankara’s statement that it is impossible to normalize Armenia-Turkey ties without resolving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was designed for domestic and Azerbaijani audiences. However, Erdogan made quite a different statement in the West.

The Turkish prime minister reiterated his position at a joint news conference with U.S. President Barack Obama, who is the major initiator of normalizing Armenian-Turkish relations. Erdogan made it clear that the protocols on the normalization of Armenian-Turkish relations have no preconditions. He immediately noted the Turkish parliament  has only one precondition to ratify these protocols – the settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

First, Erdogan’s statement at the high-level U.S.-Turkish meetings is a significant event. Much more important for Azerbaijan, though, is the U.S. president’s reaction to the statement. He just kept silent. And silence, as they say, is a sign of consent.

Second, the statement voiced later by Washington and Moscow confirmed that leading centers of world power see Turkish-Armenian relations and the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict as interdependent processes. The U.S. hopes that Armenia-Turkey rapprochement will impact the settlement of the Karabakh conflict. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Philip Gordon shared this view in a conversation with reporters almost immediately after the U.S.-Turkey talks.

In response to the question how the White House sees the fate of Armenian-Turkish relations after Obama's talks with Erdogan, Gordon said the U.S. backs Armenian-Turkish normalization and wants the protocols to be ratified soon, which will benefit Turkey and Armenia and help boost peace and stability in the region.

"The U.S. is also involved in resolving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. This topic is important not because we see it linked with Armenian-Turkish relations, but because it can also impact the stability in the region that will benefit both Azerbaijan and Armenia. We are concerned over this matter and we want it to be moved forward,” he noted.

Gordon also added that Georgia is the only point of contradiction between Washington and Moscow.

Thus, the State Department official actually admitted the importance of parallel solutions to both issues. Gordon's statement coincides with the estimates of a number of local experts who indicate some correction in Washington's position in light of Erdogan’s visit.

Moreover, Gordon almost admitted that the U.S. and Russia are close to reaching an agreement on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Gordon’s statement that Georgia is the only point of contradiction between Washington and Moscow cannot be interpreted otherwise.

Russian Foreign Ministry senior official Andrey Nesterenko stated almost simultaneously that "Azerbaijan and Armenia are on the way to a serious breakthrough on the Nagorno-Karabakh issue.”

Nesterenko added that "if the positive dynamics achieved in negotiations this year are maintained next year, there will be reason to expect the basic principles will be coordinated quickly and finally and a text of the peace agreement will be prepared on their basis.”

Third, it does not matter that the interested parties publicly declare that the normalization of Armenian-Turkish relations and the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict are not linked in terms of time. However, the fact is that they are doing everything possible to link the normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations and the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict in terms of time. So, if Washington and Moscow reach agreement on the settlement of regional conflicts, except for the Georgia-Russia situation, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan will not be able to resist this powerful union whatever he says. All his attempts to prolong the settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict are doomed to failure.

Finally, there is a need to answer the following question – which factors influence Russia’s and America's willingness to act as a single bloc to resolve the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict? The main determining factor influencing leading world powers is the inviolability of the Azerbaijani-Turkish tandem. Events have shown that attempts to split the tandem will fail.

The strength of this tandem is that the realization of many geopolitical interests of world players depends on its position. For example, without Azerbaijan’s and Turkey’s support, the West, above all, the U.S., will never be able to implement the Nabucco project. To develop and implement a unified strategy against Iran's nuclear program, the U.S. and Russia also need to agree with Azerbaijan and Turkey, as the emergence of another nuclear power in the volatile region does not the meet interests of not only Russia and America, but also Azerbaijan and Turkey, who are Iran’s neighbors.   

Russia cannot implement its energy strategy and the U.S. its Middle East strategy without Turkey.

It should be noted that Armenia’s participation is not required in solving problems that are of a geopolitical importance for leading world powers. Simply put, Armenia’s help is not required to resolve these issues. So, major world powers are forced to consider the position and interests of the Azerbaijani-Turkish tandem not for love, but for the sake of their own geopolitical interests.

Ali Mammadov

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